Last Updated Apr 17, 2022, 3:55 PM

Hutchinson, Hamilton Defensive Rookie of the Year Co-Favorites

The two favorites to be named 2022 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year are Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson and Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton. Hutchinson is considered the probable No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft according to the most recent NFL futures odds, while Hamilton is seen as a virtual lock to go in the top ten although its rare to see safeties drafted that early.

OPENING NFL DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR ODDS

  • AIDAN HUTCHINSON +600
  • KYLE HAMILTON +600
  • DEREK STINGLEY JR. +1000
  • AHMAD GARDNER +1000
  • TRAVON WALKER +1000
  • KAYVON THIBODEAUX +1000
  • JERMAINE JOHNSON II +1200
  • DEVIN LLOYD +1200
  • JORDAN DAVIS +1400

Aidan Hutchinson set the Michigan single-season sack record last year. Hutchinson recorded 14 sacks, and he was at his best when the spotlight was the brightest. He had three sacks against Penn State and three sacks against Ohio State to lead the Wolverines to a Big Ten title.

(Getty)

Hutchinson posted great numbers at the NFL Combine to become the likely first overall pick in two weeks. Jacksonville placed the franchise tag on left tackle Cam Robinson, so it seems unlikely that the Jaguars would take an offensive tackle at No. 1.

Kyle Hamilton has garnered rave reviews over the last year. Hamilton has been compared to greats like Sean Taylor, Ed Reed, and Troy Polamalu, and he is the rare safety that can be a real difference maker. Although he posted a slow 40-yard dash time at the NFL Combine, he was a consensus First Team All-American thanks to his great ball skills. However, he will likely need to have at least five interceptions to win Defensive Rookie of the Year, and that’s tough for a safety.

Five defensive linemen have been named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in the last nine years. That bodes well for the prospects of Georgia teammates Travon Walker and Jordan Davis. They were part of the best collegiate defense in recent history, leading the Bulldogs to their first national championship in 42 years. Walker is considered a probable top five pick in the NFL Draft now, while Davis could be a top ten pick and is drawing comparisons to Aaron Donald.

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