Way too early rookie of the year predictions; Getting Defensive
By: Erick Padilla @Montezuma_55
It might be a little early but ehhh, who cares? I’m going to pick 3 rookies from Defense and Offense who I believe are most likely going to win this rookie of the year award. This selection will be a little different because I will pick 3 players, offensive and defensive but the 1st player selected will come from the Early rounds (Rd 1-2) the 2nd selection will come from the middle rounds(Rd 3-4) and lastly but definitely not least, the 3rd selection will come from the finals rounds(Rd 5-7). I will start with defense and then work my way to offense.
My first selection for the defensive rookie of the year is the 2014 Butkus Award winner and Lott trophy winner and UCLA’s all-time leading tackler, Eric Kendricks. I’ve heard his size be questioned at times but if you put on the film, this guys is all over the field. The numbers don’t lie, and his instincts are elite, the guy can just flat out play. He plays in attack mood and flys sideline to sideline and is quick to diagnose plays and work his way around traffic. He will contribute immediately and start for them day 1 and cause havoc with his former teammate Anthony Barr.
My second selection(Rd 3-4) is Big 12 defensive player of the year and Consensus first-team All-American TCU’s and Dallas native Paul Dawson. People say the SEC are where the real athletes are and where all the speed is, put on the film of the Peach bowl, TCU vs Ole Miss and watch TCU defense and Paul Dawson completely dominate and harass Bo Wallace and that offense. He flies around and the game just come natural to him, he simply has the vision and awareness that isn’t teachable. I don’t care what he ran in the underwear Olympics, his speed was never an issue when he was the only player in the nation with at least 100 tackles (136) 6 sacks and 4 interceptions.
The third selection (Rd 5-7) is the First Team All-ACC and Third team All-American, Clemson’s Grady Garrett. He’s undersized by nose tackle standards but he compensates with his outstanding quickness, effort and leverage. He had 73 tackles, 10 tackles for a loss, 1.5 sacks and 12 quarterback hurries, this guy was a STEAL for the Falcons in the 5th round! Wherever his creative defensive coach Dan Quinn chooses to play him, he will be disruptive. He almost reminds me of Aaron Donald of the Rams in the way he just has the initial quickness and plays with such great leverage.
We will be working on Offense next, who is your favorite for Defensive Player of the Year?