Life in the NFL is hard, as rookies everywhere are finding out after their first taste of action. While in your typical year rookies have the preseason to be phased into the realm of professional football, the rookie class of 2020 has to endure a baptism by fire. We're playing for keeps right out of the gate.
Which rookie performers were able to make the most of the pro action in Week 6? We, along with our partners at Panini, are recognizing the best of the best each week. Here are the Offensive Rookies of the Week from each conference for Week 6 of the 2020 NFL season.
AFC OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
WR Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals
Joe Burrow has been impressive overall as a rookie, but the one area he hasn’t found much success is as a vertical passer. Entering Week 6, Burrow completed just one pass targeted at least 20 yards down the field. That changed this weekend as Burrow found fellow rookie Tee Higgins for a 67-yard completion, the longest Bengals offensive play since 2017.
That was just one of the several plays made by Higgins on Sunday against Indianapolis where he collected six receptions for 125 yards on eight targets. It was Higgins’ first career 100-yard game and a new career-high in catches. In a year when several rookie receivers have been outstanding, the Burrow-to-Higgins connection is heating up. Burrow’s accuracy combined with Higgins’ size and ball skills makes it a potent duo that should continue to gain momentum as the two young players build trust and chemistry.
NFC OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
RB D’Andre Swift, Detroit Lions
After many believed Swift could be the feature back for the Lions this season, his rookie campaign got off to a slow start after logging just 42 rushing yards on 12 attempts across Detroit’s first four games of the season. While he made some contributions as a receiver in the passing game, that output was marred by his drop in Week 1 that would have given Detroit a victory over the Chicago Bears.
The breakout performance Lions fans have been waiting for happened on Sunday as Detroit secured its second win of the season, defeating the Jacksonville Jaguars 34-16. In the convincing win, Swift tallied 116 rushing yards on 14 carries with two touchdowns. He added three receptions in the passing game. Two of Swift’s rushes went for more than 10 yards and six resulted in a Lions first-down as he showcased his burst, vision, and ability to make defenders miss. Sunday’s outing should give Swift some momentum to claim more of a workload in the Lions’ backfield and develop into the weapon Detroit had in mind when they invested pick No. 35 overall in the Georgia product.