Raiders 2022 season awards: MVP, Rookie of the Year, Breakout player, more

There wasn’t a lot to crow about for the Raiders this season, but the awards must be given out, so that’s what I’m going to do. 

Rookie of the Year: G Dylan Parham

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There is simply no other rookie the Raiders had this season who could possibly win this award. But that doesn’t mean he’s not deserving. Parham started every game this season at three different positions.

He struggled a bit early in the season, starting at right guard, center, and left guard. But by midseason, he had settled in at left guard and played some decent football the rest of the way.

Top Newcomer: WR Mack Hollins

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Hollins entered an open competition for the starting job across from Davante Adams. He stood out and won the job. Then he went on to have a very solid season. Hollins would go on to 57 passes for 690 yards and four touchdowns while doing some great blocking and special teams work as well.

Comeback Player of the Year: RB Josh Jacobs

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2021 was the worst season of Jacobs’s career. He began his career with consecutive seasons of over 1000 yards only to fall to 872 yards and a career-low 58 yards per game. The team declined his fifth-year option and played him quite a bit in the preseason which was a sign he would have to earn his snaps this season.

Then he went out and nearly doubled his previous rushing output to 1,653 yards which was the best in the league. THAT’s a comeback story.

Breakout Player: RB Josh Jacobs

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When is the Comeback Player of the Year ALSO the Breakout Player? When you go from a one-time Pro Bowl player with good stats to go on to become an elite All-Pro and lead the league in rushing.

That’s when. Jacobs not only led the league in rushing yards, but he had over 2000 yards from scrimmage (2053). His previous career-high in yards from scrimmage was 1316.

Most disappointing addition: DT Bilal Nichols

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Not sure how much was expected for Nichols, but when he was the top interior defensive lineman the team signed after gutting a previously solid group, he’d better offer something that’s at least comparable to one of the players they let go. That hasn’t happened.

While Nichols added some interior pass rush, it wasn’t much and he was a liability against the run. All while costing $6.7 million against the cap.

Best Position Group: Wide receivers

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Davante Adams, Mack Hollins, and Hunter Renfrow looked like one of the better wide receiver trios in the league. And you could include Darren Waller in that if you like. It would have been better if Renfrow and Waller hadn’t had injury issues much of the season.

But even without them, Adams and Hollins did the damn thing and Foster Moreau held up well as a receiver in relief of Waller too.

Best Game: Week 13 vs Chargers

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This game started with Derek Carr throwing a pick-six to Bryce Callahan and the Chargers going up 10-0 early in the second quarter. Then Josh Jacobs got going, Davante Adams had two huge touchdown catches, and Chandler Jones had his breakout game of the season.

After the early turnover and deficit, it became the most complete game the Raiders played all season. It was also their third straight win late in the season, and the last time the Raiders thought they might be able to rebound and make a playoff run.

Worst Game: Week 8 vs Saints

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This too was a complete game. Complete incompetence. They were down 17-0 at the half and lost 24-0. That was with the Saints starting Andy Dalton at quarterback. As for the Raiders quarterback, Derek Carr didn’t take a single snap in New Orleans territory.

They didn’t cross midfield until the last drive when Jarrett Stidham came in the game. And Davante Adams had just one catch in the game with a net two yards on his touches. One of the worst games I’ve ever seen the Raiders play.

Special Teams POY: K Daniel Carlson

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Carlson converted a record 11 field goals from 50 yards or farther. If the offense had been better, he might not have had to make field goals from that far away, but the offense wasn’t that great and Carlson became a valuable weapon.

Co-Offensive MVP’s: WR Davante Adams, RB Josh Jacobs

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No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t put this on one or the other of these guys. They both had elite seasons, worthy of being deemed the top offensive weapon on the team. Jacobs has already gotten his due as the owner of this year’s rushing title, so let’s talk about Adams.

In his first year in Silver & Black, he set a franchise record with 1516 receiving yards. And in case you were wondering, yes, he did surpass Tim Brown’s previous franchise record in 16 games.

Brown’s record was 1,404 yards and Adams had 1,443 yards in 16 games. He also set a new franchise record with eight 100-yard games in a season and his 14 TD receptions were second most.

Defensive MVP: DE Maxx Crosby

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The biggest no-brainer choice among these awards. What didn’t he do to carry this defense this season? An edge rusher who led the team in tackles. Led all edge rushers in the NFL in tackles (88), run stops (44, and tackles for loss (22) while also adding 12.5 sacks and 35 QB hits. As much as the defense struggled even with his contributions, It’s hard to imagine how bad it would have been without him.

He simply did not have bad games. And he led the NFL in snaps, which is extremely rare for a defensive end. It means he excels in every area and thus they never take him off the field no matter the situation. It’s never the wrong situation for Crosby. And I don’t think you can say that about really any other player on the team, offense or defense.

Story originally appeared on Raiders Wire