Aaron Donald once again favored to win Defensive Player of the Year, but only slightly

These days, there isn’t much of a question when it comes to the best defensive player in the NFL. Aaron Donald has established himself as the premier defender in football today, having won Defensive Player of the Year three times since 2017.

That’s not to say there aren’t some other elite defenders across the league, led by T.J. Watt, Myles Garrett, Joey Bosa, Nick Bosa and Khalil Mack, but Donald has a track record that firmly cements him as the best of the best.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone, but Donald is once again the favorite to win AP Defensive Player of the Year in 2021. According to BetMGM, his odds sit at +450, slightly ahead of Garrett at +500. That means a $100 wager on Donald to win the award would return a profit of $450.

T.J. Watt is third at +700, followed by Nick Bosa (+1100), Joey Bosa (+1100), Chase Young (+1400) and Mack (+2500). Derwin James and Bobby Wagner are the top non-pass rushers at +2500 and +3500, respectively.

There was some controversy when Donald won the award in 2020, as both Steelers fans and J.J. Watt felt T.J. Watt should’ve taken home the hardware after leading the league in sacks (15) and tackles for loss (23).

But as an interior pass rusher, Donald’s job is much tougher, facing double-teams on the majority of his pass-rush reps. Now 30 years old, Donald has shown no signs of slowing down and there’s no reason to believe he’ll regress in 2021.

He’s a good bet to become the first player ever to win Defensive Player of the Year four times.

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