The Defensive Player of the Year Award (DPOY) is shaping up much like the 1997 film, “Titanic,” did at the Oscars, a runaway. Naturally it’s only the beginning of Week 3 so there is plenty of time for things to change, but regardless, who is the frontrunner for DPOY and can anyone catch the favorite?
Before we open the envelope, let’s debate.
As of right now, there are only two people in the league capable of getting up on stage for an acceptance speech, the Cowboys‘ Micah Parsons and the Browns’ Myles Garrett.
Parsons through two weeks already has four sacks and has been a complete game-wrecker for the Cowboys defense. If Dallas can hang around in the race for the NFC East while quarterback Dak Prescott is sidelined, Parsons will be a big reason for that. It’s an obvious step for the guy to win DPOY one year after finishing second in voting behind the Steelers’ T.J. Watt, while winning Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Garrett on the other hand has three sacks and a forced fumble through two weeks. He has consistently improved sack numbers since entering the league in 2017, while generally being considered among the league’s best at his position ever since. Garrett, like Parsons, is one of the few players on the defensive side of the ball that can destroy a game all by themselves. Opposing coaching staffs most likely require melatonin supplements during those weeks just to get through it.
Parsons can be found at +400 on Pointsbet and Garrett is +500 on BetRivers. Until proven otherwise, it’s one of those two that will take home the award.
DPOY Stock Up and Down
As of right now, Von Miller’s Bills career is off to a great start, probably even better than anyone expected. He has two sacks through two weeks, while getting plenty of national attention on the Super Bowl favorite’s roster. With the Bills expected to get more than their fair share of the national spotlight, it bears watching Miller’s line which is down to +3000 on FanDuel.
As far as falling stock goes, look no further than the Rams’ Aaron Donald. He was about +850 a few weeks ago, but can be found at +1600 on FanDuel now. He has only recorded one sack in the first two games, while playing for an underwhelming Rams team at this point. There is also the potential for voter fatigue with one of the league’s best players, so Donald is a complete fade at this point.
DPOY Dark Horse Candidates
Is it likely? Absolutely not. Is it possible though? Absolutely. T.J. Watt might be sidelined right now, but he is +6600 to win the award on BetRivers. From a value standpoint, there is no other contender that you can get at that price. Even elsewhere, Watt is listed in the +3000 range, making this a value play. Previously one of the favorites to win DPOY, can Watt put on a good enough show while missing six weeks, that still catapults him into contention? Out of everyone in that price range, no one has a better chance than the Steelers’ star.