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Early NFL awards favorites

The 2022 NFL campaign has officially surpassed the 25% mark heading into the Week 6 slate of games. Although a lot can change over the next 13 weeks, it’s never too early to pick the favorites for the league’s most prestigious awards.

My selections highlight the players who would be in the running to win an award based on their performances over the first five weeks of the season. I have chosen three favorites for the following awards: Most Valuable Player, Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year, and Offensive and Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Most Valuable Player

  1. Josh Allen has thrown for a league-high 1,651 yards with 14 touchdowns and four interceptions. The fifth-year quarterback has also rushed for 225 yards and a pair of scores. Allen has the Bills poised for a deep playoff run and is the favorite to be the 2022 MVP.
  2. Patrick Mahomes leads the NFL with 15 touchdown passes and has tossed just two picks in 189 attempts. The former MVP has thrown a trio or more scoring passes in three games this season and is on pace to challenge his career-high 50 touchdowns set in 2018.
  3. Lamar Jackson continues to be the league’s top dual-threat quarterback. The 2019 MVP has completed 63.8% of his passes with 12 touchdowns and five interceptions. Jackson is also ninth in the NFL with 374 rushing yards and a pair of scores.

NFL awards precdiction

Offensive Player of the Year

  1. Cooper Kupp remains a target monster with a league-best 49 catches on 64 targets for 527 yards and four touchdowns. The reigning Offensive Player of the Year has double-digit receptions in three games and is on pace to catch 160 passes this season.
  2. Justin Jefferson leads the league with 547 receiving yards while tallying 40 catches and two scores. The two-time Pro Bowl receiver has 22 catches for 301 yards over the past two weeks. Jefferson has posted 147 yards or more in a trio of games in 2022.
  3. Jalen Hurts is ranked seventh with 1,359 passing yards but has tallied more touchdowns on the ground than in the air. The third-year quarterback has rushed for 266 yards and six scores and is the primary reason the Eagles are unbeaten heading into Week 6.

Defensive Player of the Year

  1. Micah Parsons is having another stellar season with a league-high six sacks and 19 total tackles in five games. The reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year tallied 13 sacks a year ago and is on pace for 20-plus sacks this season.
  2. Nick Bosa is tied atop the sacks leaderboard with six but is questionable for Week 6 with a groin injury. The former Defensive Rookie of the Year has 15 total tackles and six tackles for loss.
  3. Maxx Crosby is enjoying a banner season with six sacks and a league-high 11 tackles for loss. The one-time Pro Bowl defensive end has posted a league-best 31 total tackles and is the dark horse candidate to win the DPOTY award.

Offensive Rookie of the Year

  1. Dameon Pierce has caught fire in recent weeks with 310 rushing yards and three touchdowns over his past three games. The fourth-round pick is fifth in the league with 412 yards and has also caught 13 passes.
  2. Chris Olave ranks 12th in the NFL with 389 receiving yards while tallying 25 receptions and two scores. The 11th overall pick averages 15.6 yards per catch but is in the concussion protocol and is questionable for Week 6.
  3. Drake London has cooled off the past two weeks after opening the season with 16 catches for 214 yards and a pair of touchdowns in his first three games. The eighth overall pick has 22 receptions on 39 targets for 266 yards.

Defensive Rookie of the Year

  1. Devin Lloyd has posted 49 total tackles and two interceptions to start his NFL career on a high note. The first-round pick has also broken up six passes in five games and already has the look of an All-Pro linebacker.
  2. Travon Walker continues to improve each week and has posted 18 total tackles, a sack, and an interception. The top overall pick also has one pass defense and is one of the reasons the Jaguars’ defense is ranked sixth.
  3. Sauce Gardner has already established himself as an elite cornerback in just five games with one pick and six pass breakups. The fourth overall pick is also a good run defender with 20 total tackles.

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