2013 PFF Offensive Rookie of the Year

Being tabbed Offensive Rookie of the Year is an impressive start to a career and Khaled Elsayed reviews the top picks and the PFF winner for 2013.

| 3 years ago

2013 PFF Offensive Rookie of the Year

2013-OROYAll year long I’ve been producing a weekly piece entitled The Race for Rookie of the Year. In that I’ve looked at all the rookies and determined just who is the top guy out there was for 2013. Well now I’ve invited some fellow analysts into the discussion to help name the PFF awards.

So now we’re going to look at the 2013 PFF Offensive Rookie of the Year, with a countdown from three runners up to the eventual winner.


3rd Runner Up

Travis Frederick, C, Dallas Cowboys

Oh, how we laughed. The Cowboys had apparently erred with their first round selection of Travis Frederick with some who figured that he didn’t even belong in the first two rounds.

2013-OROY-inset-frederickWell, this was a case of the team believing in what they saw and Fredrick has repaid them with a fine year with his run blocking a particular treat.

As a run blocker he finished as our highest-ranked center with the first-rounder able to generate movement at the point of attack and quick to the second level. He’s not the finished article yet and you never like to see a center give up the 24 quarterback disruptions he did (which led to him having the fifth-worst pass blocking grade of his peers) but rookies rarely are without need for improvement.


2nd Runner Up

Eddie Lacy, RB, Green Bay Packers

2013-OROY-inset-lacyHe’ll win this in the eyes of some and it’s easy to see why. Eddie Lacy was a battering ram of a running back and he did it while playing hurt a number of times.

That’s a concern for the future with his physical style inviting big hits, but for now we can just marvel at his 56 broken tackles that were fourth of all running backs and a big part of why he had the fifth-highest rushing grade of all running backs.

He carried his team when they needed him more than any other offensive player.


1st Runner Up

Keenan Allen, WR, San Diego Chargers

Generally speaking, we don’t see a lot of rookie receivers — especially those drafted outside of the first round — make a huge impression. They’re often guilty of mental mistakes or dropped passes as the adjustment to the NFL comes at them hard.

2013-OROY-inset-allenAllen, however, is one of those exceptions, looking the part in his debut campaign as he got his 1,000-yard season and wound up eighth overall in our receiving rankings.

That puts him in impressive company, especially as his first four weeks in the league saw him pick up just 110 yards. By the end of it, though, he was a force after the catch with 13 missed tackles forced and positive grades in six games straight as the Chargers clinched an unlikely playoff spot.


2013 PFF Offensive Rookie of the Year

Larry Warford, G, Detroit Lions

I’ll confess to not watching much college football in years gone, but out of interest last year I started studying some defensive players. One of those was Sheldon Richardson and it was impressive to watch the Missouri defensive linemen. Except in one game where one particular right guard continually got the better of him. That man would end up the Lions third round pick, a second team All-Pro selection for us and our Offensive Rookie of the Year.


It’s not the flashiest of picks. He didn’t rumble into the end zone for touchdowns or make leaps at the goal lines to pick up scores. He doesn’t play for a playoff team and you don’t see him getting a lot of talk in review programs or during the actual game. Yet what Warford has done is look like an NFL player since Day 1. Of every guard in the league who we graded on every single play, Warford would finish fourth out of all of them. Positives in every area with no sacks allowed in pass protection and just four penalties called on him all year. While others experienced peaks and valleys, Warford was a model of consistency, grading out positively in all but three games.

For a guard to come into the league and do all of that? Well, it just doesn’t happen and the table below shows the highest-ranked rookie guards since we’ve started grading

Year Name Team Grade Year Rank
2013 Larry Warford DET +22.8 4th
2012 Kevin Zeitler CIN +13.0 12th
2011 Danny Watkins PHI -4.3 49th
2010 Mike Iupati SF +14.8 13th
2009 Louis Vasquez SD +10.6 27th
2008 Jeremy Zuttah TB +8.9 31st

Simply put, we haven’t seen a rookie guard like Larry Warford in our time and for his truly special year, he’s our Offensive Rookie of the Year.


Follow Khaled on Twitter: @PFF_Khaled



  • Court

    Good to see, I’ve watched every Lions game & he’s been great on the line. Do you think he’s unlucky to have missed the Pro Bowl?

    • Kevin

      Sitton didn’t even make the pro bowl this year and he has a far more recognizable name. It’s all garbage.

    • PFF_Pete

      Guard was one of the most snubbed positions in the Pro Bowl. Evans, Yanda, Mankins, and especially Iupati made it mostly on reputation. Mathis, Warford, Sitton all much more deserving:

    • thabe331

      Considering Levy had that many interceptions and didn’t make it, it says a lot about the pro bowl’s selection processes

      • Court

        Thanks for the replies. Yeah, other than Megatron & Suh, Warford & Levy were my choices for the Pro Bowl from the Lions.

        • thabe331

          It’s been done in the past before, that when guys like that have a career year, but they’re not that well known, then they won’t get into the pro bowl. I remember a reserve safety for cinncinnati led the league in interceptions but didn’t make the pro bowl.

  • Hannah Hayes

    No Mike Glennon? 😛

    • PFF_Pete

      Sorry, no bonus points for being a QB. Glennon’s pass grade was 31st among QBs who took 100 snaps. Poor accuracy and really struggled whenever faced with pressure.

      • Hannah Hayes

        Totally kidding. I thought he was pretty bad.

    • a57se

      Hannah, you are cute but Mike Glennon? Seriously?

  • Kyle

    What happened with Giovani Bernard?
    He ended the season at +17.7
    Fredric ended the season at +13.2

    Was it just a case of not being the best graded RB?

    • CJ

      You cannot compare the cumulative rating of different positions.

  • LightsOut85

    Seeing that rookie G chart…we should have paid Vasquez :-/. Clary at G was a failed experiment, and putting his money to Vasquez could have made the Chargers offense that much better.

  • Ray

    Is this writer even aware that no Offensive linemen has never won ROY in its existance? And he has TWO in the running? Another reason why this site sucks.

    • Ray

      No OL has Ever won ROY, excuse my typo

      • Guest

        The site isn’t saying who they think will win. The writer decided who he thought SHOULD win. Who has or hasn’t won it in the past is entirely irrelevant.

      • Abouthat

        That is completely irrelevant. The writer made his chose about who SHOULD win, not who he thinks will win. Any idiot could project who will win by counting how many times a given player is mentioned on ESPN. Why would it matter who has or hasn’t won it in the past?

  • Jakub Mazur

    Why Allen is in front of Lacy?