news / 01.20.2016 NFC East awards: Odell Beckham Jr. is the Offensive Player of the Year
NFL Nation reporters from the NFC East -- Phil Sheridan, Dan Graziano, John Keim and Todd Archer -- have crunched the numbers, ran through the analysis, double-checked their notes and gone with some gut feelings.
This week, they are offering up their NFC East Awards.
The Rookie of the Year has gone to Washington's Preston Smith, Coach of the Year to Washington's Jay Gruden and Defensive Player of the Year went to Philadelphia's Fletcher Cox.
Many wondered what Odell Beckham Jr. would do in his second season after putting up 91 catches for 1,305 yards and 12 touchdowns as a rookie in just 12 games. Well, in 15 games in 2015, he caught 96 passes for 1,450 yards and 13 touchdowns.
And that's why he was named the NFC East's Offensive Player of the Year.
In the history of the NFL no receiver has put up more yards in his first two seasons than the 2,744 yards Beckham has put up. Randy Moss had 2,726 in his first two seasons. And Beckham missed five games in his first two years.
"The things that he can do, he's demonstrated," former Giants coach Tom Coughlin said during the season. "He can throw the ball. He can run the ball. He can catch the ball in all situations. He can kick. He's your backup extra-point and field goal guy. He's your backup quarterback. He can run the scout team for you if you want. When you come to work on the zone-option, he can do that if you like. He can do a lot of things."
Most importantly he can catch the ball and score touchdowns. He is a nightmare for the three other NFC East teams that have to face him twice a year.
Here is why our writers voted the way they did:
Phil Sheridan -- In Philadelphia, we saw a quarterback coming back from devastating knee injuries. In Dallas, we saw what happens when a franchise quarterback gets hurt. In Washington, we watched a young QB emerge, willing his team to a division title. Odell Beckham Jr. may be the most exciting player in the division, but Kirk Cousins was the difference between going to the playoffs and watching them on TV.
Todd Archer -- Beckham proved he was a lot more than a one-year wonder or even a one-catch wonder with what he was able to do in his second season. What's funny is two of his three lowest-output games came against the Cowboys a year after he made that great one-handed catch on Brandon Carr. He can still make the great catches but he can also make the important catches. Defenses keyed on him and he still turned heads.
Dan Graziano -- With everyone watching closely to see what Beckham would do after a stunning rookie season, he delivered a superstar-caliber encore to stamp himself as one of the very best, if not the best, in the league at his position. He's a difference-making, matchup-busting nightmare who should remain the focal point of defenses for years to come. The only blemish on his Pro Bowl season was the Week 15 meltdown against Carolina that earned him a one-game suspension and raised some red flags about a temper that could cause him problems down the road. But if he can get that under control, there's nothing to stop him.
John Keim -- I love Redskins tight end Jordan Reed and he deserves mention here so I'm giving him one here. Nobody could cover him all season and he was a key factor in them winning the division. But Beckham is one of the scariest offensive players in the NFL, let alone the division. There wasn't a lot around him at receiver this season, yet Beckham still managed to catch 96 passes for 1,450 yards and 13 touchdowns. He hurts teams in many ways and his hands are incredible. In two seasons, he's caught 187 passes with 25 touchdowns. He's still not in his prime.
espn.go.com | January 20, 2016