- Jameis Winston (+425) is favored to win the 2022 NFL Comeback Player of the Year but another quarterback could be the better bet
- Derrick Henry (+700) and Christian McCaffrey (+1100) look to become the first running back to win the award since 2004
- Only one defensive player has been named CPOY in the past 20+ seasons
The criteria for the NFL Comeback Player of the Year is by far the most nebulous of all the major sports awards. While it made sense to honor Joe Burrow in 2021 following his return from a catastrophic knee injury, Philip Rivers simply rebounded from a mediocre season before his 2013 win, and Ryan Tannehill claimed the 2019 trophy after taking his level of play to new heights.
Before we look at the odds for this year’s list of CPOY contenders, here’s where you can check out the top betting sites for NFL football in 2022, and see the latest 2022 NFL Betting Odds and other award futures.
Comeback Player of the Year
Quarterbacks own this award
Returning from last year’s season-ending ACL injury, Jameis Winston (+425) is favored to be named the 2022 NFL Comeback Player of the Year. Quarterbacks have claimed the award in four consecutive seasons and 10 out of the past 14 campaigns, however, the Saints signal-caller will no longer have Sean Payton in his headset.
The 28-year-old drew little free-agent interest and is only a couple years removed from his comical 30-30 season with the Buccaneers in 2019.
"I've got Jameis Winston as the comeback player of the year."@salaams_from_68 is fired up for Jameis Winston and the Saints this upcoming NFL season. pic.twitter.com/uEklgCOGlC
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) July 4, 2022
King Henry to reclaim his crown?
Derrick Henry (+700) won his second-straight NFL rushing title in 2020, becoming only the eighth player in NFL history to run for 2,000 yards. The 28-year-old was also on a ridiculous pace last season, finishing ninth in rushing with 937 yards despite missing the last nine games. If King Henry can return to form, he could become the first running back to capture the CPOY since Willis McGahee in 2004.
Discount defensive players
Eric Berry (2015) is the only man on the defensive side of the ball to win Comeback Player of the Year in the past 20 seasons. That doesn’t bode well for Chase Young (+2000), who endured a miserable sophomore campaign — just 1.5 sacks in nine games — after winning 2020 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. Khalil Mack (+2500) will pair with Joey Bosa on the Chargers defensive line, but at 31 years old, he’s a longshot to return to his 2016 DPOY form.
Can you trust Christian McCaffrey after playing just 10 total games the past two seasons?
Our injury analyst @TheRealAdam_H weighs in: https://t.co/qR1DVsEawt pic.twitter.com/6rRBsJVh55
— 4for4 Fantasy Football (@4for4football) July 6, 2022
Other CPOY contenders
Fantasy managers are still lining up to take Christian McCaffrey (+1100) despite the 26-year-old missing the past two seasons with an assortment of injuries. In 2019, the multi-purpose threat became just the third player in NFL history with at least 1,000 rushing yards and 1,000 receiving yards in the same season.
Michael Thomas (+800) is in the exact same boat. After setting the NFL record in catches (149) in 2019, the two-time All-Pro suffered a high ankle sprain in Week 1 of 2020 that he is somehow still rehabbing to this day.
One of those days☀️ pic.twitter.com/VQPHvNrp5o
— Lamar Jackson (@Lj_era8) July 7, 2022
After tearing his Achilles prior to the 2021 season, Cam Akers (+2200) struggled to regain his form in the Rams’ Super Bowl run. However, the third-year back has incredible upside as Sean McVay’s bellcow this year.
Lamar Jackson (+1200) is also a sneaky bet to win Comeback Player of the Year after an ankle injury kept him out of the final four weeks of the season. Looking beefy and bulky in camp, the 2019 NFL MVP will run away with the award if he leads the Ravens back into the postseason.
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