- Books are establishing Ben Roethlisberger as the +225 favorite to win next season’s NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award
- Roethlisberger missed most of last season after suffering an elbow injury. Is he the best bet?
- Analysis of odds on all the top contenders is featured in the story that follows
Sportsbooks have given Big Ben a ringing endorsement for NFL comeback player of the year, favoring Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to win the 2020-21 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award. Roethlisberger suffered an elbow injury in Week 2 of last season and hasn’t played since.
The Steelers QB is listed at opening-line odds of +225.
2020-21 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Odds
|Ben Roethlisberger||Pittsburgh Steelers||+225|
|JJ Watt||Houston Texans||+500|
|Nick Foles||Chicago Bears||+600|
|AJ Green||Cincinnati Bengals||+600|
|Cam Newton||Free Agent||+750|
|Matthew Stafford||Detroit Lions||+750|
|Miles Garrett||Cleveland Browns||+1200|
|DeSean Jackson||Philadelphia Eagles||+3300|
|CJ Mosley||Cincinnati Bengals||+3300|
|Andy Dalton||Cincinnati Bengals||+4000|
|Joe Flacco||Free Agent||+4000|
|Jordan Reed||Free Agent||+6000|
|Malcolm Butler||Tennessee Titans||+6000|
|Akiem Hicks||Chicago Bears||+6000|
|Alshon Jeffery||Philadelphia Eagles||+6000|
|Antonio Brown||Free Agent||+6000|
|Bradley Chubb||Denver Broncos||+6000|
|Keanu Neal||Atlanta Falcons||+6000|
|Kwon Alexander||San Francisco 49ers||+6000|
|TY Hilton||Indianapolis Colts||+6000|
|Stephen Gostkowski||Free Agent||+6600|
|Trent Williams||Washington Redskins||+9000|
|Xavien Howard||Miami Dolphins||+9000|
|Lamar Miller||Free Agent||+10000|
|Josh Rosen||Miami Dolphins||+10000|
Odds taken March 27th.
Houston Texans defensive lineman JJ Watt is the second-favorite at +500.
QBs Are Comeback Players
The last two NFL CPOY winners were both quarterbacks. Andrew Luck, the 2018 winner, was a Pro Bowl QB for the Indianapolis Colts who’d missed the entire 2017 season following shoulder surgery.
Luck returned to lead the Colts, who’d finished 4-12 in his absence, to a 10-6 mark and an AFC Wild Card postseason position.
Ben Roethlisberger: “My arm feels healthier than it has in years.”
Not to be dramatic, but if 7 wins an MVP, don’t you DARE be surprised.
You’ve been warned @NFL
— Across The Bridge (@ATBPGH) March 20, 2020
If Roethlisberger, a two-time Super Bowl winner, comes back to lead Pittsburgh into the playoffs after the Steelers went 8-8 without him last season, he’s got this award in the bag.
On the other hand. last season’s CPOY came out of nowhere. Tennessee Titans QB Ryan Tannehill was signed to back up Marcus Mariota. He wasn’t even on the board when the opening line was released for 2019-20 NFL CPOY.
Mariota was benched following Week 6. Tannehill took the helm and led the Titans to a 7-3 finish and a Wild Card spot. He carried them all the way to the AFC Championship Game.
Defensive Win Unlikely
Comeback players generally turn heads by putting up impressive numbers. That’s so much easier for offensive players to do. So best to stay away from a wager on Watt.
By a defensive lineman.
IN ONE SEASON. (2014)
— NFL Throwback (@nflthrowback) March 22, 2020
No wonder then that 11 of the last 12 NFL CPOY winners played on the offensive side of the ball. The last defender to win the award was Kansas City Chiefs safety Eric Barry in 2015. A defensive lineman hasn’t been NFL CPOY since Joe Johnson of the New Orleans Saints in 2000.
Foles Could Be A Sleeper
Nick Foles already engineered one of the NFL’s most memorable comebacks. In 2017, the former Philadelphia Eagles #1 QB replaced the injured Carson Wentz. He led the Eagles to an NFL title and was named Super Bowl 52 MVP.
Going to Chicago, he teams up with a Bears squad one year removed from an NFC North title and equipped with one of the NFL’s stiffest defenses. That makes Foles an intriguing option at +600.
Thankful for the opportunity! ?⬇️ https://t.co/iVIdvBo5P7
— Nick Foles (@NickFoles) March 19, 2020
AJ Green is also at +600. The Cincinnati Bengals receiver played just nine games last season. He posted career lows in receptions (46) and yardage (694).
The Bengals hold the first overall pick in the NFL Draft, and figure to be selecting Heisman Trophy-winning QB Joe Burrow of LSU. Green’s not likely to post spectacular digits on the other end of passes from a rookie under center.
Look Away From The Obvious
Luck shows us that sometimes, the form charts hold when it comes to NFL CPOY. More frequently, though, they don’t.
Chad Pennington was CPOY twice in three years with two different teams. Tommy Maddox won it after coming back from the XFL.
"Everything about it, since Cam Newton suffered his Lisfranc fracture to when he was released a couple of days ago, was the height of disrespect and as disrespectful as I've seen a star player, a franchise icon, treated in recent sports history." — @getnickwright pic.twitter.com/nWdxtdwkKT
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) March 27, 2020
This is why the best bet is a guy currently without a team – Cam Newton.
Newton will sign somewhere soon. He’s a former NFL MVP with a chip on his shoulder and something to prove.
Pick: Cam Newton (+750).