Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, who set NFL rookie records for most touchdown passes and most total touchdowns, was selected as the 2020 Rookie of the Year and the Offensive Rookie of the Year, chosen in voting conducted by the Professional Football Writers of America (PFWA).
Washington Football Team defensive end Chase Young, who led all NFL rookies in sacks, was selected as the 2020 Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Herbert, the sixth overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft out of Oregon, played in 15 games (all starts), and threw for 4,336 yards, which ranks second all-time among NFL rookie quarterbacks. He completed 396 of 595 passes (66.6 percent) and threw for an NFL-record 31 touchdowns. His 36 total TDs (31 passing and 5 rushing) was also the most by a rookie in NFL history. Herbert took over as the Chargers’ starting quarterback in Week 2 vs. Kansas City after an injury to Tyrod Taylor. He threw for 311 yards and a touchdown in a loss to the Chiefs, the fourth-most passing yards in a debut since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger. He set NFL rookie QB records for most consecutive games with multiple passing TDs (seven), most 300-yard passing games (eight) and most games with three or more passing TDs (six). Herbert was selected NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month in both October and November.
Herbert is the first Chargers player to be selected as the PFWA’s Rookie of the Year and the second to receive Offensive Player of the Year honors (wide receiver Keenan Allen in 2013).
Young, the second overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft out of Ohio State, played in 15 games (all starts) and led all NFL rookies with 7.5 sacks. He posted 44 total tackles (32 solo) and he added four passes defensed, 12 quarterback hits, four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and a fumble return for a touchdown. He had seven games with at least one full sack, the most by a rookie in Washington history. Young also had three games with a sack and a fumble recovery, the most in a season by any player in franchise history. He was the second rookie in Washington history to post at least seven sacks and 10 tackles for loss (Brian Orakpo in 2009), and Young was the only NFL rookie in 2020 to reach those marks. His four forced fumbles tied for the most all-time by a Washington rookie, and he set a franchise rookie record with his three fumble recoveries. Young was selected both NFC Defensive Player and NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month for December, and he was a PFWA All-NFC honoree – the only 2020 rookie to be selected to an all-conference squad.
Young is the first Washington player to be selected Defensive Rookie of the Year by the PFWA.
The Indianapolis Colts led all clubs with four All-Rookie selections with running back Jonathan Taylor, placekicker Rodrigo Blankenship, kick returner Isaiah Rodgers and special teamer Jordan Glasgow. The three Colts special teams unit honorees tied a PFWA record accomplished by the 2015 Seattle Seahawks and the 2016 Kansas City Chiefs.
The Baltimore Ravens, Carolina Panthers, Cleveland Browns, Kansas City Chiefs, Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Chargers each had two selections. In all, 17 clubs are represented among the 27 players honored.
The All-Rookie team offense includes Herbert at quarterback, Jacksonville’s James Robinson and Taylor at running back, Pittsburgh’s Chase Claypool and Minnesota’s Justin Jefferson at wide receiver, Cleveland tight end Harrison Bryant, Denver center Lloyd Cushenberry III, Seattle’s Damien Lewis and New England’s Mike Onwenu at guard and Cleveland’s Jedrick Wills Jr. and Tampa Bay’s Tristan Wirfs at tackle.
The All-Rooke defense consists of defensive linemen Derrick Brown (Carolina), Raekwon Davis (Miami), Javon Kinlaw (San Francisco) and Young, linebackers Kenneth Murray Jr. (Los Angeles Chargers), Patrick Queen (Baltimore) and Isaiah Simmons (Arizona), Minnesota’s Cameron Dantzler and Kansas City’s L’Jarius Sneed at cornerback and Carolina’s Jeremy Chinn and Tampa Bay’s Antoine Winfield Jr. at safety.
Placekicker Blankenship, Kansas City punter Tommy Townsend, kick returner Rodgers, Baltimore punt returner James Proche II and special teamer Glasgow make up the All-Rookie special teams selections.
The PFWA has awarded an All-Rookie team every season since 1974.
2020 ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: QB Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
2020 OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: QB Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
2020 DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: DE Chase Young, Washington Football Team
2020 PFWA ALL-ROOKIE TEAM
QB – Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
RB – James Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars; Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts
WR – Chase Claypool, Pittsburgh Steelers; Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings
TE – Harrison Bryant, Cleveland Browns
C – Lloyd Cushenberry III, Denver Broncos
G – Damien Lewis, Seattle Seahawks; Mike Onwenu, New England Patriots
T – Jedrick Wills Jr., Cleveland Browns; Tristan Wirfs, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
DL – Derrick Brown, Carolina Panthers; Raekwon Davis, Miami Dolphins; Javon Kinlaw, San Francisco 49ers; Chase Young, Washington Football Team
LB – Kenneth Murray Jr., Los Angeles Chargers; Patrick Queen, Baltimore Ravens; Isaiah Simmons, Arizona Cardinals
CB – Cameron Dantzler, Minnesota Vikings; L’Jarius Sneed, Kansas City Chiefs
S – Jeremy Chinn, Carolina Panthers; Antoine Winfield Jr., Tampa Bay Buccaneers
PK – Rodrigo Blankenship, Indianapolis Colts
P – Tommy Townsend, Kansas City Chiefs
KR – Isaiah Rodgers, Indianapolis Colts
PR – James Proche II, Baltimore Ravens
ST – Jordan Glasgow, Indianapolis Colts
PFWA NFL ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: 1966 – MLB Tommy Nobis, Atlanta Falcons; 1967-74 – no selections; 1975 – RB Mike Thomas, Washington Redskins; 1976 – WR Sammy White, Minnesota Vikings; 1977 – RB Tony Dorsett, Dallas Cowboys; 1978 – RB Earl Campbell, Houston Oilers; 1979 – RB Ottis Anderson, St. Louis Cardinals; 1980 – RB Billy Sims, Detroit Lions; 1981 – RB George Rogers, New Orleans Saints; 1982 – RB Marcus Allen, Los Angeles Raiders; 1983 – RB Eric Dickerson, Los Angeles Rams; 1984 – WR/KR Louis Lipps, Pittsburgh Steelers; 1985 – WR Eddie Brown, Cincinnati Bengals; 1986 – RB Rueben Mayes, New Orleans Saints; 1987 – ILB Shane Conlan, Buffalo Bills; 1988 – RB John Stephens, New England Patriots; 1990 – S Mark Carrier, Chicago Bears; 1991 – OLB Mike Croel, Denver Broncos; 1992-2012 – no selections; 2013 – RB Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers; 2014 – WR Odell Beckham, Jr., New York Giants; 2015 – RB Todd Gurley, St. Louis Rams; 2016 – RB Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys; 2017 – RB Kareem Hunt, Kansas City Chiefs; 2018 – QB Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns; 2019 – DE Nick Bosa, San Francisco 49ers; 2020 – QB Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers.
PFWA NFL OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: 1992 — PK Jason Hanson, Detroit Lions; 1993 — RB Jerome Bettis, Los Angeles Rams; 1994 — RB Marshall Faulk, Indianapolis Colts; 1995 — RB Curtis Martin, New England Patriots; 1996 — RB Eddie George, Houston Oilers; 1997 — RB Warrick Dunn, Tampa Bay Buccaneers; 1998 — WR Randy Moss, Minnesota Vikings; 1999 — RB Edgerrin James, Indianapolis Colts; 2000 — RB Mike Anderson, Denver Broncos; 2001 — RB Anthony Thomas, Chicago Bears; 2002 — RB Clinton Portis, Denver Broncos; 2003 — WR Anquan Boldin, Arizona Cardinals; 2004 — QB Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers; 2005 — RB Cadillac Williams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers; 2006 — QB Vince Young, Tennessee Titans; 2007 — RB Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings; 2008 — QB Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons; 2009 — WR Percy Harvin, Minnesota Vikings; 2010 — QB Sam Bradford, St. Louis Rams; 2011 — QB Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers; 2012 — QB Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins; 2013 — WR Keenan Allen, San Diego Chargers; 2014 — WR Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants; 2015 — RB Todd Gurley, St. Louis Rams; 2016 — RB Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys; 2017 — RB Kareem Hunt, Kansas City Chiefs & RB Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints; 2018 — RB Saquon Barkley, New York Giants; 2019 — RB Josh Jacobs, Oakland Raiders; 2020 – QB Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers.
PFWA NFL DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: 1992 — CB/PR Dale Carter, Kansas City Chiefs; 1993 — DT Dana Stubblefield, San Francisco 49ers; 1994 — DT Tim Bowens, Miami Dolphins; 1995 — DE Hugh Douglas, New York Jets; 1996 — DE Simeon Rice, Arizona Cardinals; 1997 — LB Peter Boulware, Baltimore Ravens; 1998 — CB Charles Woodson, Oakland Raiders; 1999 — DE Jevon Kearse, Tennessee Titans; 2000 — LB Brian Urlacher, Chicago Bears; 2001 — LB Kendrell Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers; 2002 — DE Julius Peppers, Carolina Panthers; 2003 — LB Terrell Suggs, Baltimore Ravens; 2004 — CB Dunta Robinson, Houston Texans; 2005 — LB Shawne Merriman, San Diego Chargers; 2006 — LB DeMeco Ryans, Houston Texans; 2007 — LB Patrick Willis, San Francisco 49ers; 2008 — LB Jerod Mayo, New England Patriots; 2009 — LB Brian Cushing, Houston Texans; 2010 — DT Ndamukong Suh, Detroit Lions; 2011 — OLB Aldon Smith, San Francisco 49ers; 2012 — LB Luke Kuechly, Carolina Panthers; 2013 — LB Kiko Alonso, Buffalo Bills; 2014 — DT Aaron Donald, St. Louis Rams; 2015 — CB Marcus Peters, Kansas City Chiefs; 2016 — DE Joey Bosa, San Diego Chargers; 2017 — CB Marshon Lattimore, New Orleans Saints; 2018 — LB Darius Leonard, Indianapolis Colts; 2019 — DE Nick Bosa, San Francisco 49ers; 2020 — DE Chase Young, Washington Football Team.