June 02, 2020
K.J. Hamler Rookie of the Year Odds
It’s not easy for a wide receiver to win Rookie of the Year. A wideout has won the award just three times in the last 21 years, and even future Hall of Famers like Larry Fitzgerald, Calvin Johnson and Michael Thomas have failed to win the award.
It will be difficult for K.J. Hamler to earn the honor with this in mind, and the oddsmakers at SportsBetting.com agree by giving the rookie from Penn State 50-1 odds to win Rookie of the Year.
K.J. Hamler ROY Betting Odds
Hamler is considered a longshot to be named Rookie of the Year. He has some of the longest odds on the board at 50-1, and it’s going to be tough for him to post the numbers needed to win this award. Hamler is expected to be the third receiver behind Courtland Sutton and fellow rookie Jerry Jeudy, and there’s only so many passes to go around.
During his time with the Nittany Lions, Hamler never had a 1,000-yard season. However, he was the leading receiver in Penn State’s run-first offense in each of the last two years. He finished his career with just 98 receptions for 1,658 yards and 13 touchdowns, but the offense found other ways to get him involved as he ran the ball 17 times over two years in Happy Valley.
Some were skeptical of Hamler given his relatively low production in comparison to other receivers, but we saw him shine in big games. His first 100-yard game came in 2018 when Penn State almost upset Ohio State, and he was fantastic against Michigan and Minnesota last year.
Hamler was one of the fastest receivers in college football last year. He didn’t run the 40-Yard Dash at the NFL Combine after tweaking his hamstring, but he reportedly clocked a sub-4.3 during workouts. While you can largely take reported workout numbers with a grain of salt, if you watched him play last year, you know he was one of the speediest receivers in the country.
He has the potential to be a Tyreek Hill type of playmaker, but at 5’9 and 178 pounds, he isn’t going to out-physical cornerbacks. Hamler is explosive off the line of scrimmage and in the open field, but he will need to be used in the slot as he does have trouble with press coverage.
Hamler will line up in the slot position while Jeudy and Sutton will be on the outside. That will help him create the separation he needs at the line of scrimmage, and the presence of the other two receivers will keep defensive coordinators from turning their attention to him.
Denver will ask him to fill the role of Emmanuel Sanders, who was traded to San Francisco midway through last season. Sanders thrived in the slot in Denver, making two Pro Bowls in the Mile High City, and the team would be delighted with similar production from Hamler.
2020 Rookie of the Year Prediction
While Hamler could have a very successful rookie season, it’s unlikely that he will have the production needed to win Rookie of the Year. There are only so many passes that can go around in Denver, and Hamler might be the fourth-most targeted player behind Jeudy, Sutton and Melvin Gordon III. His only real path to Rookie of the Year is an injury to either Jeudy or Sutton, but then he might be forced out of his natural slot role. Hamler can be a real game changer in his first year, but don’t expect ROY.