Cover Photo: Mark Brown/Getty Images


PaddyPower has released odds on NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, and we’ve got ourselves an interesting contest between six young up-and-coming stars.


Bradley Chubb (3/1) 
Roquan Smith (6/1) 

Leighton Vander Esch (7/1) 

Tremaine Edmunds (9/1) 

Minkah Fitzpatrick (9/1) 

Harold Landry (10/1)


Bradley Chubb (3/1) will undoubtedly be the consensus leader in the clubhouse. He was the fifth overall pick after an outstanding career at North Carolina State and now has a unique situation on his hands, playing alongside future Hall of Famer Von Miller. Not only will Chubb learn from one of the best to ever do it, but he’ll likely be gifted with more one-on-one matchups because of that.


Speaking of guys in great situations to learn from, that’s exactly what Roquan Smith (6/1) has with the Bears, following their acquisition of Khalil Mack. This could end up being a formidable duo for a long time, and you have to be certain the Monsters of the Midway knew what they were doing on this one. Smith did miss some training camp, so you can look at that as a positive (rest) or a negative (fewer reps). 


Minkah Fitzpatrick (9/1) was slightly snubbed during this year’s NFL Draft. After being projected as a Top 10 pick, he slipped slightly to the Dolphins who were waiting with open arms at No. 11. Fitzpatrick has been getting nothing but praise from reporters and those close to the team. His best quality here in the prop bet is versatility - not only will Fitzpatrick line up in the slot, but he’ll also be playing some safety as well. From an aspect of simply being on the field in meaningful scenarios, you're getting more bang for your buck here over guys like Chubb and Smith.

Tremaine Edmunds (9/1) was also a minor draft snub victim, so he’ll be looking to prove all those teams wrong that passed on him. The size and athleticism are already elite, but the scary part is there’s still some room to grow in each of those facets. Bills coach Sean McDermott has done great work with linebackers in the past, so there was definitely some added incentive to get Edmunds when he did. There’s no doubt that Edmunds will make an impact, but in terms of winning the award, playing for the Bills might not get him the recognition he needs.

Harold Landry (10/1) is the only non-first rounder that made the cut. The Titans traded up to grab him with the 41st pick and they’ll be getting quite a unique talent. Landry’s collegiate career at Boston College was nothing short of spectacular, as he racked up a school-record 26 career sacks; in 2016, he led the nation with 16.5 of them. The sacks are where Landry can really separate himself from the rest of the field; after all, you don't need complex metrics to recognize the importance of a sack. There is some question as to whether Landry will be ready for the season opener after he suffered a high-ankle sprain, so keep an eye out for his status.


Leighton Vander Esch (7/1) will likely garner some wagers playing on the most popular team in football. It doesn't hurt that the kid can play, too. The big risk here is that Vander Esch has had both ankle and groin issues during OTAs, minicamp and the preseason. He’s listed as questionable for the Cowboys' season opener, and there’s no sensible reason for them to rush Vander Esch back with Sean Lee still in the fold


This award should prove to be a tight race with all the talent involved, but if you're looking to place a wager on it, these names are a good place to start. 


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Al Walsh is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Al Walsh also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username 14AdotWalsh. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.