Season Predictions

'NFL Honors' predictions: Seven awards, 29 voters, only one unanimous selection

This Thursday, Feb. 10, Keegan-Michael Key will host the 11th edition of NFL Honors, which will air live nationally on ABC at 9 p.m. ET from YouTube Theater in Los Angeles. The annual event features the announcement of The Associated Press awards and the newest class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Before the official hardware is handed out, our analysts provide their picks for the major individual awards:

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER

Rank
1
Aaron Rodgers
Green Bay Packers · QB

(18 votes: Baldinger, Battista, Blair, Carr, Chadiha, Frelund, Goodbread, Grant, Mariucci, Parr, Patra, Reuter, Sessler, Shook, Smith, Thomas, Warner, Zierlein)


2. Tom Brady | 8 votes: Bergman, Bhanpuri, Cersosimo, Hall, Hanzus, Jones-Drew, Rank, Ross

3. Cooper Kupp2 votes: Filice, McGinest 

4. Matthew Stafford | 1 vote: Brandt


Why Joe Thomas chose Aaron Rodgers: Rodgers led the NFL in passer rating (111.9) and finished the regular season with 37 touchdown passes to only four interceptions. He's a magnificent player on the most consistent and best team of the regular season. He is a shoo-in to win this award.

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Rank
1
Cooper Kupp
Los Angeles Rams · WR

(25 votes: Baldinger, Battista, Bergman, Bhanpuri, Blair, Brandt, Carr, Cersosimo, Chadiha, Frelund, Goodbread, Grant, Hall, Hanzus, Jones-Drew, Mariucci, Parr, Patra, Rank, Reuter, Ross, Sessler, Shook, Smith, Warner)


2. Jonathan Taylor | 2 votes: Thomas, Zierlein

T-3. Deebo Samuel | 1 vote: Filice

T-3. Tom Brady  | 1 vote: McGinest


Why DeAngelo Hall chose Cooper Kupp: Kupp has the ability to always find a way to get open when everyone knows he's getting the ball -- even when he's double- or triple-teamed. His craftiness allows him to find the weakness in the defense and take advantage, which is a big reason why he racked up a league-high 1,947 receiving yards. When you build a wide receiver, no matter the size dimensions, you want them to play the game the way Kupp does.

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Rank
1
T.J. Watt
Pittsburgh Steelers · Edge

(20 votes: Baldinger, Battista, Bergman, Bhanpuri, Blair, Cersosimo, Chadiha, Goodbread, Grant, Hall, Hanzus, Jones-Drew, Mariucci, McGinest, Parr, Ross, Sessler, Shook, Thomas, Warner)


2. Aaron Donald | 7 votes: Carr, Frelund, Patra, Rank, Reuter, Smith, Zierlein

T-3. Nick Bosa | 1 vote: Brandt

T-3. Micah Parsons | 1 vote: Filice


Why Jeffri Chadiha chose T.J. Watt: Watt tied Michael Strahan's NFL single-season record for sacks with 22.5, and he actually missed two games. No defender was as disruptive this season as Watt.

OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

Rank
1
Ja'Marr Chase
Cincinnati Bengals · WR

(28 votes: Baldinger, Battista, Bergman, Bhanpuri, Blair, Carr, Cersosimo, Chadiha, Filice, Frelund, Goodbread, Grant, Hall, Hanzus, Jones-Drew, Mariucci, McGinest, Parr, Patra, Rank, Reuter, Ross, Sessler, Shook, Smith, Thomas, Warner, Zierlein)


2. Jaylen Waddle | 1 vote: Brandt


Why Adam Rank chose Ja'Marr Chase: Chase is the no-brainer pick here. Pretty amazing, considering ...


A) A whole bunch of people thought the Bengals were stupid for drafting a wide receiver -- as opposed to an offensive tackle -- in the first place.

B) Everybody thought the guy forgot how to play football after a few drops in August.


Then, when the season actually kicked off, he proceeded to have one of the most astounding rookie seasons -- at any position -- EVER.

DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

Rank
1
Micah Parsons
Dallas Cowboys · LB

UNANIMOUS SELECTION


Why Gil Brandt chose Micah Parsons: To be a great linebacker in the NFL, you need size, speed, competitiveness and great ball-reaction skills, and Parsons ranks very highly in all these traits -- he might be the best since Lawrence Taylor entered the league in 1981. One need look only to this year's Pro Bowl, a game in which most players, understandably, do not always go all out, for evidence of Parsons' will to succeed; there he was, at the end of the first half, chasing Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes across the field to record a strip-sack. The only first-year pro to top 80 tackles and 10 sacks in the last quarter century, per NFL Research, Parsons is, quite simply, one of the best I've ever seen as a rookie at his position, making him an easy choice for this award. 

COMEBACK PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Rank
1
Joe Burrow
Cincinnati Bengals · QB

(23 votes: Baldinger, Battista, Bergman, Bhanpuri, Carr, Cersosimo, Chadiha, Filice, Frelund, Goodbread, Grant, Jones-Drew, Mariucci, McGinest, Parr, Patra, Rank, Reuter, Ross, Sessler, Thomas, Warner, Zierlein)


2. Dak Prescott | 6 votes: Blair, Brandt, Hall, Hanzus, Shook, Smith


Why Judy Battista chose Joe Burrow: Burrow's breakout season was made all the more remarkable by what preceded it: a severe knee injury suffered late last November. Burrow returned bigger and stronger and with his old mobility by midseason -- allowing him to extend plays -- to take the Bengals to the Super Bowl.

COACH OF THE YEAR

Rank
1
Vrabel put in a nice freshmen year as Titans head coach, getting them <i>thisclose</i> to the postseason. Having to start Blaine Gabbert the final week of the season didn't help, but the main reason for Tennessee's failure to make the playoffs was a tougher-than-expected AFC South. No one thought J.J. Watt would return to his all-world self, ensuring the Texans were more than viable. No one saw the Colts coming. The Jags, while coming in last place, lost several close games and still own the core of a playoff-ready team. Vrabel's squad displayed its coach's head-strong resilience, often seen during his days with the Patriots. Take, for example, the win over the Eagles in Week 4, when the offense converted three fourth downs on the final drive to win the game in overtime. Vrabel will move up this list if he can coax more from Marcus Mariota, and move this team into double-digit-win territory.
Mike Vrabel
Tennessee Titans

(14 votes: Battista, Bhanpuri, Carr, Chadiha, Frelund, Hall, Hanzus, McGinest, Patra, Rank, Reuter, Ross, Thomas, Warner)


2. Zac Taylor | 13 votes: Baldinger, Blair, Brandt, Cersosimo, Filice, Goodbread, Grant, Jones-Drew, Mariucci, Parr, Sessler, Shook, Smith

3. Matt LaFleur | 2 votes: Bergman, Zierlein


Why Steve Mariucci chose Zac Taylor: The third-year head coach took the Bengals from worst to first in a division that had the other three teams in the postseason a year ago. I'm not sure anyone saw a turnaround of this magnitude coming, besides the players in the locker room and the people in the building.

EACH ANALYST'S BALLOT

Table inside Article
Analyst MVP OPOY DPOY OROY DROY Comeback Coach
Brian Baldinger Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Judy Battista Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Jeremy Bergman Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Matt LaFleur
Ali Bhanpuri Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Tom Blair Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Dak Prescott Zac Taylor
Gil Brandt Matthew Stafford Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Jaylen Waddle Micah Parsons Dak Prescott Zac Taylor
David Carr Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp Aaron Donald Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Brooke Cersosimo Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Jeffri Chadiha Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Gennaro Filice Cooper Kupp Deebo Samuel Micah Parsons Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Cynthia Frelund Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp Aaron Donald Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Chase Goodbread Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Marcas Grant Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
DeAngelo Hall Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Dak Prescott Mike Vrabel
Dan Hanzus Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Dak Prescott Mike Vrabel
Maurice Jones-Drew Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Steve Mariucci Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Willie McGinest Cooper Kupp Tom Brady T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Dan Parr Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Kevin Patra Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp Aaron Donald Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Adam Rank Tom Brady Cooper Kupp Aaron Donald Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Chad Reuter Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp Aaron Donald Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Marc Ross Tom Brady Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Marc Sessler Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Zac Taylor
Nick Shook Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Dak Prescott Zac Taylor
Matt Smith Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp Aaron Donald Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Dak Prescott Zac Taylor
Joe Thomas Aaron Rodgers Jonathan Taylor T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Kurt Warner Aaron Rodgers Cooper Kupp T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Mike Vrabel
Lance Zierlein Aaron Rodgers Jonathan Taylor T.J. Watt Ja'Marr Chase Micah Parsons Joe Burrow Matt LaFleur

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