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Bradley Chubb Fading in 2018 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Odds

Eric Rosales

by Eric Rosales in NFL Football

Updated Mar 26, 2020 · 11:32 AM PDT

Bradley Chubb of the Denver Broncos
After opening as the heavy favorite to win 2018 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, Bradley Chubb's odds have taken a hit after he has just 1.5 sacks through his first four games. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire)
  • Bradley Chubb’s DROY odds now considered a long shot
  • Derwin James emerges from the pack as the current favorite
  • What other players should be considered?

The NFL landscape changes in a hurry.

One minute, you’re the can’t-believe-he-fell-into-Denver’s-lap dynamo and favorite to bring home NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. And a minute later (in this case, four short weeks), Bradley Chubb needs binoculars to see the top of the leaderboard.

(See the “Top 5” Tab in the graph below.)

Odds to Win 2018 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year

The clubhouse leader is currently Los Angeles Chargers stud Derwin James, who has been a boon for the franchise, and doesn’t make the list below because he somehow fell to 17th in the draft.

James already has three sacks on the season, doubling Chubbs’ 1.5 over his first four games. He also has five more tackles than Chubb – which is fair, considering the ball is flying in the passing game more than ever, but he’s also had time to pick up an interception too.


More than anything,  odds to win 2018 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year are saying the one stat that you can’t quantify: James is simply making more of an impact than Chubb.

2018 NFL DROY Odds

Player Team Pos Drafted Odds
Derwin James LAC S 17th Overall +250
Darius Leonard IND ILB 36th Overall +333
Tremaine Edmunds BUF ILB 16th Overall +450
Denzel Ward CLE CB 4th Overall +600
Bradley Chubb DEN EDGE 5th Overall +1200

*Follow the link in the table to see all available options

Is the Longshot Bet Appealing?

One thing that we know for sure is that, despite this being a short season, we’ve literally just been exposed to what these guys can do in a 240 minute professional level sample. Other good youngsters have outshone him on the pass rush.

But man, watch this explosion against Ravens, splitting a couple of grown men to flatten Joe Flacco. I mean, my goodness. Tell me that doesn’t have Demarcus Ware 2.0 written all over it.


But you can point to the final drive against Kansas City and you see the best and worst of the Denver rookie. On one play, he’s blindly rushing up the field letting Pat Mahomes break contain. The next he’s nearly burying him. And the rest of the time, he’s neutralized.


There’s too much strength and explosiveness, in my opinion, for Chubb not to succeed.

It’s not like he’s the only one not getting home. After three sacks in the opener, Von Miller has just one sack in three games. An uptick in Miller, and you’ll see the other side of the line crumple too. This is good value.

Who Else Is Worthy of a Bet

There’s no doubt that James is worthy of a bet, and it’s a good one to make – but where’s the fun in going with the favorite?

I was going to say Minkah Fitzpatrick has been a revelation for the Dolphins, before he and the Fins were shredded by the Patriots. Suddenly wins over the Titans, Raiders, and Jets seem less impressive. He’ll need to win more to prove he is a stabilizing presence and difference maker in that backfield.

The one guy that has really shown tremendous talent and big play ability is Denzel Ward. He has two picks to start his career, but he’s always around the ball and, like James, makes it exciting when he is.

And call me crazy, but if you’re looking for long shots, don’t forget Roquan Smith (+1500).

He’s nowhere to be seen right now, but he’s playing on what might be the best defense in the NFL in the Chicago Bears. Nabbing him at this rate might seem crazy right now, but this guy is on a unit that will be making things happen. He could figure huge into that by the end of the year. That’s why we call it a long shot.

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