The Cincinnati Bengals got the projected best wide receiver in this class with the No. 5 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. That has to feel like a big win for the franchise. The selection will reunite Chase with Joe Burrow, his college quarterback at LSU. The Burrow-Chase connection is expected to produce some real fireworks at the NFL level.
But surprisingly, FanDuel Sportsbook's odds to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year award suggest Chase is something of a long shot to win in 2021. There's really no other way to say it: these odds are disrespectful.
Ja'Marr Chase Rookie of the Year Odds
Chase has been given +1500 odds to take home the hardware in 2021, tying him for the seventh-best mark in the class. He's tied with Jacksonville Jaguars rookie Travis Etienne, who Urban Meyer said he drafted to be a "third-down back" last night.
How quickly people forget. Chase isn't just the best wide receiver in this class, he's one of the most special WR prospects to enter the league this decade.
When he last touched the field in 2019, Chase broke records left and right. In 14 games, he racked up 84 receptions for 1,780 yards and 20 touchdowns. He did that while serving as Burrow's clear-cut WR1 on an LSU offense that also featured Justin Jefferson, who recorded 1,400 yards as a rookie with the Minnesota Vikings in 2020. And Chase was only 19 years old that season.
Having just turned 21, Chase has undoubtedly been putting in work during his time off after opting out in 2020. He put that on full display during his pro day, running a 4.38 40-yard dash with a 41-inch vertical and an 11-foot broad jump. That's special stuff.
Entering the NFL, he'll be catching passes from a QB he already has built-in chemistry with while playing a primary role on one of the most pass-happy offenses in football. That sounds like a Rookie of the Year recipe.
Putting Chase's odds below a fellow pass-catcher in an even-more crowded offense like Kyle Pitts (+1300) is ridiculous. But having him this far behind guys like Mac Jones (+950), who looks like he won't start in Week 1, and Zach Wilson (+850), who looks like he's 12, is downright absurd.
Expect Chase to make these odds look silly by the time Week 1 rolls around.
Sign up for FanDuel Sportsbook today and get your first bet risk free for up to $1,000!
Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. 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.