2018 NFL Odds: Baker Mayfield, Saquon Barkley Rookie of the Year Favorites

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistAugust 9, 2018

New York Giants' Saquon Barkley waves to fans during NFL football training camp in East Rutherford, N.J., Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Seth Wenig/Associated Press

With the first full week of NFL preseason games starting Thursday, updated odds have been released for the 2018 Rookie of the Year award. 

Per OddsShark, New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley is the favorite at +140 (bet $100 to win $140). Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield is the No. 2 choice at +400. 

Mayfield is in an interesting spot with the Browns. He's been dazzling the team in his first training camp, but Cleveland has been adamant that Tyrod Taylor is going to be its quarterback. 

"We've said this is Tyrod Taylor's team," Browns general manager John Dorsey told reporters last month. "He's taken a team to the playoffs and he has demonstrated that, you know what, he's our starter."

The same can be said for Josh Rosen of the Arizona Cardinals and Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens, who are tied for the third-best odds at +900. The Cardinals and Ravens both have veteran starters in place, at least to start the season. 

Two of the best value bets on the list are Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley and Washington running back Derrius Guice at +1600. Wideout Julio Jones will always command the attention of opposing defenses, leaving ample opportunities for Matt Ryan to look in Ridley's direction.

ESPN.com's John Keim noted in June it would be a surprise if Guice wasn't Washington's Week 1 starter. He racked up over 1,200 rushing yards for LSU in each of the past two seasons against SEC defenses. 

Barkley is hard to overlook because of his all-around performance over three years at Penn State. He's a proven runner, receiver and return specialist. No one in this year's rookie class can match his versatility for a Giants team that needs playmakers to help Odell Beckham Jr. 

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