Top-ten picks in back-to-back-to-back seasons. Offensive skill players in back-to-back-to-back seasons. Generational talents in back-to-back-to-back seasons. All of this and you have yet to find an Offensive Rookie of the Year award?
The Falcons were able to draft three incredible talents in the draft over the past three years. These players were unanimously considered to be generational talents and yet Arthur Smith has yet to get one of them an Offensive Rookie of the Year award.
Atlanta Falcons have squandered potentially having an Offensive Rookie of the Year
Kyle Pitts became the highest-drafted tight end in NFL history when the Atlanta Falcons took him with the fourth-overall pick in the 2021 draft. The team then followed that up by taking USC receiver Drake London with the eighth pick in the 2022 draft. And then, obviously, they took Bijan Robinson with the eighth pick this past April.
All three of these players are tremendous talents. Pitts is the greatest tight end prospect ever, London was on a historic pace in his final season at USC before he got injured, and Bijan Robinson has shown that he is the talent that everyone hyped him up to be.
Yet, the Falcons watched Ja'Marr Chase win Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2021, Garrett Wilson won OROY in 2022, and now C.J. Stroud is well on his way to winning OROY in 2023.
The Falcons have no excuses to not have a OROY winner since 2021.
The maddening part about it is that it isn't like these three players are busts. They have shown why they were drafted so high but the offensive scheme has kept them from putting up eye-popping numbers.
Assuming things continue the way they are going this season, Drake London would have come the closest but he was hindered by horrible quarterback play and a head coach who was fine with him disappearing from the gameplan.
If there is one thing that should make us feel better it is that Ja'Marr Chase put up monster numbers as a rookie in 2021 and C.J. Stroud is doing the exact same thing this season, plus he plays quarterback. Heck, Stroud might even be gunning for MVP. It would be virtually impossible for Bijan to keep pace with Stroud and the same can be said about Pitts with Chase in 2021.