Betting News & Analysis

2022 Offensive, Defensive, Comeback Player of the Year Award Odds: Jalen Hurts, Tyreek Hill, Micah Parsons and more

Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill (10) enters the field prior to a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the first quarter at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

• Consider Tyreek Hill (+1600) for OPOY: The Miami Dolphins wide receiver has helped transform the team's offense and is an intriguing longshot option at this point in the season.

Micah Parsons (-130) remains the favorite for DPOY: But if looking for a value bet, Von Miller (+2500) is having an excellent year with the Buffalo Bills.

• Barkley, McCaffrey or Geno for CPOY?: Barkley (-250) has built a strong case thus far, but Geno Smith (+450) is also an intriguing bet.

Estimated Reading Time: 6 mins

After seven weeks of the 2022 NFL season, we have a vague handle on who the best teams are and which individuals are on their way to standout seasons.

Already, plenty of offseason bets have been made to look ridiculous, but it’s a good opportunity to look at how the markets currently sit for some of the biggest awards and where the smart money belongs.

All odds per BetMGM as of Oct. 25

Offensive Player of the Year

Frontrunner: QB Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles +500

Exceeding expectations is a big part of winning awards at the NFL level, and as much as the Eagles had a great offseason, it all hinged on what kind of step forward Jalen Hurts could take. He currently ranks fourth in PFF passing grade (80.8) after finishing 20th a season ago. Hurts is averaging 8.2 yards per attempt, has an 80.6% adjusted completion rate and looks like a dramatically different passer from a season ago, all while still providing a rushing threat.

If he can keep up this kind of pace over the season, he will not only have a career year, but also be firmly in the running for this award.

The Competition: WR Stefon Diggs +750, WR Justin Jefferson +500, RB Nick Chubb +1100, RB Saquon Barkley +1200

Four of these past five awards have been won by a non-quarterback, with receivers and running backs making up the winners. Stefon Diggs is second in the league in receiving yards and yards per route run and is going to be the primary receiver in one of the league’s most explosive offenses.

Justin Jefferson’s production has been hot or cold so far this season, but when things are in sync, his numbers are off the charts. Nick Chubb and Saquon Barkley each have over 450 yards after contact this season and are on pace for huge years as bell-cow running backs for their respective offenses. Of this group, Diggs looks on track for the biggest season.

The Best Bet: WR Tyreek Hill, Miami Dolphins +1600

The place I would put my money, though, is on Tyreek Hill, who has clearly had a transformative effect on the Miami Dolphins' offense. Hill leads the league in receiving yards (773) and is averaging over half a yard more per route run than anybody else (3.38). He has just two drops so far this season and has caught 54.5% of his contested targets. There’s a lot of credit to go around for the improvement in Miami’s offense this season, but Hill may deserve the lion’s share.

Defensive Player of the Year

Frontrunner: EDGE Micah Parsons, Dallas Cowboys -130

The apotheosis of Micah Parsons into a pass-rush god is near complete. The pretense that he’s an off-the-ball linebacker who moonlights as an edge rusher or a true hybrid player has largely gone this season. He has lined up as an off-ball linebacker 94 times this season, but that leaves over 300 snaps when he has been a defensive lineman. Against Detroit in Week 7, he didn’t play a single snap as a true linebacker.

Parsons leads the league with 36 total pressures despite 40 snaps in coverage taking away from his rushing opportunities. He has earned a 91.7 PFF pass-rush grade and has sacked the quarterback eight times. At this pace, Parsons could threaten the sack record, which is always a major part of these awards.

The Competition: EDGE Nick Bosa +700, EDGE Myles Garrett +1000

Parsons isn’t the only pass-rusher who looks capable of putting up a huge season. Nick Bosa has 33 pressures despite missing a game and a half with a groin injury, and Myles Garrett is tied on the same number. Garrett is a little easier for opposing offenses to scheme against as the only real threat on the Cleveland defensive line, but Bosa has the potential to put up monster numbers with enough help around him.

The Best Bet: EDGE Von Miller, Buffalo Bills +2500

Von Miller’s impact on the Bills' defense has been obvious and potent so far this season. Buffalo leads the league in pressure rate (43.6%) while blitzing less often than any other team (13.7%). The defense wins consistently with its front four, and Von Miller has been a big part of that. He has six sacks already, and some of his best work has come on third downs, where he has a 22.7% pressure rate — one of the best marks in the league. Given his odds relative to the other candidates, I think Miller represents the best value bet.

Comeback Player of the Year

Frontrunner: RB Saquon Barkley, New York Giants -250

Saquon Barkley is an obvious comeback story. He’s currently trailing only Nick Chubb for the league lead in rushing, and he’s doing it behind a bad offensive line as opposed to one of the best in the league. Barkley is averaging 3.4 yards per carry after contact and has 17 explosive runs of 10 or more yards. Barkley also brings more to the table as a receiving option than Chubb, with more than 100 extra yards so far this season in that area.

Barkley already has more rushing yards this season than he had in the past two years combined. He will set a career high barring injury.

The Competition: QB Geno Smith +450, RB Christian McCaffrey +800

The only real case against Geno Smith is the philosophical question of whether this season is actually a comeback, simply a breakout or the emergence of a player we didn’t know existed. Smith is a top-five-graded quarterback through seven games, has one of the best big-time throw rates in the league and has the best completion rate of any quarterback. He’s averaging 8.0 yards per attempt in an offense that wasn’t expected to be good — in large part because Geno Smith was its quarterback.

Smith’s breakout is far more impressive than Barkley’s given expectations, but it’s hard to articulate what exactly he’s coming back from. Christian McCaffrey’s case rests on what he could become within the Kyle Shanahan offense in San Francisco, which we have had only glimpses of so far. He is an elite rusher and receiver, with the skill set to line up in the slot or out wide and make an impact. If Shanahan taps into that in a big way, McCaffrey could put up huge numbers, which would give him a strong case by the season's end.

The Best Bet: QB Geno Smith, Seattle Seahawks +450

If we take the spirit of the award rather than the semantics of “comeback,” Geno Smith’s value at +450 is hard to ignore. He is arguably having the best season of any of the candidates. Relative to what people expected of him before the season, that’s mind-blowing. 

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