Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to introduce to you the first TDN All-Rookie Team, as voted on by members of our staff. We’ll also be releasing an end of the season version of this piece, so if a player you love isn’t on here, yell at the other members of the staff and hold out hope that your guy makes the final cut after Week 17.
First Team: Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns
The situation has been brutal in Cleveland, and Mayfield has made plenty of typical rookie mistakes in the process. But the flashes of brilliance and outstanding play in big moments are enough for him to top this list by a narrow vote of 4-2.
Second Team: Josh Rosen, Arizona Cardinals
First Team: Saquon Barkley, New York Giants
Did you know Barkley has 58 catches in the first eight games of his career? Did you know that over a 16-game season, he’s on pace for 116 catches. For a running back. Did you know that Eli Manning is checkdown coward?
Second Team: Phillip Lindsay, Denver Broncos
First Team: Calvin Ridley, Atlanta Falcons/Courtland Sutton, Denver Broncos/Christian Kirk, Arizona Cardinals
Ridley and Sutton were unanimous members of the team, with the former the clear-cut top choice. Kirk edged out a late push by D.J Moore for the final spot. Fun fact: Dante Pettis got one first team vote from someone on our team despite catching just three passes this season (it wasn’t Brad Kelly’s vote either).
Second Team: D.J. Moore, Carolina Panthers/Anthony Miller, Chicago Bears/Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Green Bay Packers
First Team: Dallas Goedert, Philadelphia Eagles
Slim pickings to find a tight end for this team, but Goedert is the best of the bunch. Believe it or not, one person voted for Chris Herndon to make the first team. Three guesses who that was.
Second Team: Chris Herndon, New York Jets
First Team: Mike McGlinchey, San Francisco 49ers/Braden Smith, Indianapolis Colts
These two have been studs, and there really wasn’t much competition for their spots. One thing to note: two members of our staff voted Desmond Harrison as a second team choice, which briefly made me consider retirement.
Second Team: Orlando Brown, Baltimore Ravens/Brian O’Neill, Minnesota Vikings
Interior Offensive Linemen
First Team: Quenton Nelson, Indianapolis Colts/Will Hernandez, New York Giants/Frank Ragnow, Detroit Lions
Unanimous trio from every single voter. It is difficult for rookie interior offensive linemen to enter the league and shine right away, but these three clearly have. On their way to great careers.
Second Team: James Daniels, Chicago Bears/Connor Williams, Dallas Cowboys/Billy Price, Cincinnati Bengals
Interior Defensive Linemen
First Team: Da’Ron Payne, Washington Redskins/Maurice Hurst, Oakland Raiders
Payne was a unanimous first team selection, while Hurst needed a tiebreaker split with Hand to emerge victorious. The only four players to receive votes on the interior defensive line are the ones listed here.
Second Team: B.J. Hill, New York Giants/Da’Shawn Hand, Detroit Lions
First Team: Bradley Chubb, Denver Broncos/Marcus Davenport, New Orleans Saints
It was close between Davenport and Landry, but the former edged out his second round counterpart much to this writer’s chagrin. Kemoko Turay did receive two second team votes, while Avery managed a single first team vote as well.
Second Team: Harold Landry, Tennessee Titans/Genard Avery, Cleveland Browns
First Team: Darius Leonard, Indianapolis Colts/Fred Warner, San Francisco 49ers/Leighton Vander Esch, Dallas Cowboys
Leonard and Warner were unanimous choices for first team, while Vander Esch had to settle for four of six votes. Smith received a pair of first team nods, while Baker was a unanimous second teamer and Edmunds had only one person fail to vote for him. Instead, yours truly voted for Kyzir White, the only linebacker not already mentioned to receive a vote.
Second Team: Roquan Smith, Chicago Bears/Jerome Baker, Miami Dolphins/Tremaine Edmunds, Buffalo Bills
First Team: Denzel Ward, Cleveland Browns/Jaire Alexander, Green Bay Packers/Donte Jackson, Carolina Panthers
It was a nearly unanimous first team, but one staff member voted for Taron Johnson over Jackson. In addition to the second teamers below, Carlton Davis (1) and Quenton Meeks (2) also received votes.
Second Team: Taron Johnson, Buffalo Bills/Holton Hill, Minnesota Vikings/Mike Hughes, Minnesota Vikings
First Team: Derwin James, Los Angeles Chargers/Jessie Bates, Cincinnati Bengals
Two votes for Minkah Fitzpatrick over Jessie Bates kept this from being a unanimous first team duo, but I thought this was perhaps the easiest pair to choose in the entire selection process. Reid and Fitzpatrick were the only other safeties to receive a vote.
Second Team: Justin Reid, Houston Texans/Minkah Fitzpatrick, Miami Dolphins