Many awards markets this offseason opened with shorter odds than they typically have. That sort of shift was inevitable given some of the tremendous value we’ve been able to get over the last four years. That said, in-season awards markets have changed much less, at least so far. We’ll start with a few value options, then follow that with some notes on various awards markets.
Awards Market Value Options
MVP: Derek Carr (+2800 to +5000 DraftKings)
Chances are that Carr won’t be productive enough to win this year’s MVP. However, the Saints have weapons at wide receiver and Carr has played well through his first two games. More importantly, New Orleans is 2-0 and they have the league’s easiest schedule. That gives the Saints a realistic path to the No. 1 seed in the NFC, which is a major factor in the MVP race. Geno Smith may be a better option at +8000, but Carr’s MVP odds actually have a greater disparity between sportsbooks.
Defensive Player of the Year: T.J. Watt (+350 to +650 DraftKings)
This is Micah Parsons’ award to win, as the Cowboys are a contending team and he’s their best player. For Watt, he already has three sacks along with the unique advantage of a defensive touchdown. If the Steelers remain a competitive team, Watt will be a staple in this race. It’s genuinely surprising that Watt’s DPOY odds are so different between books.
Comeback Player of the Year: Lamar Jackson (+1600 to +4000 DraftKings)
Jackson missed five games last year, plus a playoff game. Since he had an injury that cost him the rest of last season, he probably had a significant enough injury to qualify for this award. The key word there is “probably”. If Jackson does qualify for this award in the eyes of voters, his +4000 price on DraftKings is absolutely ridiculous. Jackson plays Tua Tagovailoa in Week 17, which is a contest that could ultimately determine this race.
Coach of the Year: Dennis Allen (+1400 to +2000 DraftKings)
The presence of Derek Carr makes Allen’s COY candidacy less certain than Arthur Smith’s. If the Falcons win the NFC South, Smith is going to be very hard to beat in this race. If the Saints win the division, Carr may, and probably will, be viewed as the primary difference-maker for New Orleans. Still, the Saints went 7-10 last season, they’ve started 2-0, and they have the league’s easiest schedule. Allen definitely has a path, and you can get him at a solid value on DraftKings.
Awards Market Notes
- Tagovailoa (+600) and Patrick Mahomes (+600) are the favorites in this race depending on the sportsbook you use. The Chiefs face the Bears in Week 3 in an obvious “right the ship” matchup for this underwhelming offense.
- Tua faces Josh Allen’s (+1000) Bills in Week 4, in a game that will have major MVP ramifications. If you like Allen in this race, you can get him at +1000 on FanDuel at a value.
- Jalen Hurts (+1000), Lamar Jackson (+1200), Trevor Lawrence (+1500), and Dak Prescott (+1600) each have paths on the team success front.
- Joe Burrow (+1200) and especially Justin Herbert (+1800) are both 0-2 quarterbacks that could storm back into this race in a hurry. Burrow’s odds are curiously low given the Bengals’ disappointing start.
- Brock Purdy (+2200) may not be productive enough to win this year’s MVP, but his 49ers have a very realistic path to the NFC’s No. 1 seed.
- Geno Smith is +8000 on BetMGM. If you’re going to take a stab at an MVP longshot, Geno is your guy.
Offensive Rookie of the Year Notes
- Bijan Robinson (+190) has been the standalone OPOY favorite since this market opened, and he should be. Generally speaking, Robinson will need an injury to not win this race based on his current track.
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