I find myself wanting to argue about the Offensive Rookie of the Year race on Twitter far too often. Reading Twitter arguments is annoying.
So, let's break down the race here. After watching every rookie quarterback snap this year, I've thought way too much about this.
Martin has a better resume than at least half of the Offensive Rookies of the Year over the last 20 years. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back just got stuck in a season with three outstanding quarterbacks. Martin was incredible in October and November, but had a slow start and is finishing slow. He'll be a great starter for a long time. The same is true for Morris, who proves that long speed is underrated. He's the perfect fit for Washington's scheme.
In any other season, Wilson would win the award. He's been sensational overall. He's better in the pocket than early in the season and the team has mixed in zone-read plays very well. A strong case can be made he's the best rookie of the second half of the season. But this is Marshawn Lynch's offense, and Seattle's passing game was extremely limited for too long to give him the award.
I made the case for Luck over RG3 at midseason. I won't repeat the argument here, but it actually came before Luck's best stretch and Griffin's worst stretch of the season. Luck had my vote after nine weeks, but things have slowly slipped away since then.
Luck still does so many impressive things on a weekly basis. He's the best rookie at moving in the pocket before making plays. He's arguably the most valuable runner of all the rookies. His late-game heroics against the Detroit Lions were a lot of fun, but they were necessary because of Luck's mistakes. There's no denying that all the hits Luck has taken have caught up to him. His accuracy has suffered and he's turned the ball over a ton in part because he's so aggressive. The Colts push the ball down the field. It's a high-risk, vertical offense.
Interim coach Bruce Arians threw Luck into the deep end of the pool right away. Unlike the Seahawks, the Colts are not afraid to screw it up. With a lackluster offensive line and defense, Luck has a lot on his shoulders. He also has an underrated supporting cast with Reggie Wayne, T.Y. Hilton, Dwayne Allen and Vick Ballard. It's a young group, so there are bound to be ups and downs. Despite the victories, Luck has not played his best over the last month.
That leaves ...
Yes, he missed a game. He still deserves the award if he finishes out the final two games well. Forget the rookie class: There's barely a quarterback in the NFL that is steadier than RG3. The Redskins roll out the same concepts week after week and defenses can't stop them. There are some very well-paid quarterbacks that go an entire career without steady, disciplined weekly play (Jay Cutler, Tony Romo and Michael Vick come to mind). You know what you are going to get out of Griffin each week.
He is going to be accurate, make smart decisions, and break off a few explosive plays. He'll hurt you with his legs when he needs to. ESPN's Steve Young remarked that the Redskins don't ask Griffin to do too much in terms of his reads and progressions yet. Young suggested this was a "bridge" offense to what Griffin will run in future years. That's not something voters should hold against Griffin; it's good coaching.
This class has a chance to go down as one of the greatest of all time. For this year, Griffin leads the pack.