Last night, Chase Young became the first Washington player ever, to win the Associated Press Defensive Rookie Of The Year. It came as a surprise to nobody. The second overall pick in 2020 has been on a collision course with the award since mid-season.
His leadership is beyond his years. It became apparent by the mid-way point of the season, that Young was the unquestionable leader of the Washington defense. Already, in his rookie season. A defense that was playing well. So well, that it was largely on the strength of those performances that Washington went 5-2 in their final seven games.
Young started with a bang, forcing a fumble on Eagles QB Carson Wentz. That, and his 1.5 sacks helped spurn a comeback and victory in Young’s NFL debut.
An immediate impact was near-expected. Young dominated at Ohio State, and was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, and a consensus All-American. It came to fruition incredibly, and Young becomes the fourth Ohio State player in five years, to win the Defensive Rookie Of The year Award (Joey Bosa – 2016, Marshon Lattimore – 2017 and Nick Bosa – 2019).
Making An Impact
Many people point to Young’s touchdown-saving hit on Joe Burrow in Week 11, as the season’s tipping point. Washington went on to win that game, on a run of four straight, to eventually win the NFC East division title.
By season’s end, the talented defensive end had tallied 44 total tackles, 7.5 sacks, four forced fumbles. He also registered three fumble recoveries, including one that he returned 47 yards against the 49ers for his first NFL touchdown.
That fumble recovery was a microcosm of his season. There were many times, where Young appeared completely content to put the team on his young back, and carry them to the NFC East title. And that’s what he did. Not since the days of Sean Taylor, has a player elicited such a visceral response from the WFT fan base.
He was the best Washington player week-in and week-out.
He was the best rookie defensive player in the entire league.
Congratulations Chase, on what will likely just be the first of many impressive NFL awards.