Top 5 NFL Rookies (Week 8) | Atlanta Falcons’ Kyle Pitts & Bengals’ Ja’Marr Chase Are Already Elite

It’s that time again, when we rank the best rookies in the National Football League entering Week 8.

1. Ja’Marr Chase (WR, Cincinnati Bengals)

Cincinnati Bengals rookie wideout Ja’Marr Chase has been torching the league to the tune of 754 receiving yards, the most ever by a rookie through seven games in league history.

Having his college quarterback tossing passes to him again in the NFL has helped immensely.

Chase looks nothing like a rookie, and this past weekend he torched the Ravens secondary for 201 receiving yards in the Bengals’ huge 41-17 win in Baltimore. Don’t look now, but Queen City is currently the No.1 overall seed in the AFC playoff picture.

2. Mac Jones (QB, New England Patriots) 

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones has continued to crush his rookie report.

The former Alabama quarterback registered his first 300-yard passing day in a 54-13 blowout of the New York Jets. Jones is looking like the class of the rookie QB crop.

Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels needs to take the training wheels off and let the kid play.

3. Rashawn Slater (LT, Los Angeles Chargers)

Slater has handled himself like a ten-year veteran. He’s responsible for protecting franchise QB Justin Herbert’s blind side and he’s done a magnificent job all season. He’s been exceptional in both pass protection and run blocking.

Starting tailback Austin Ekeler hasn’t had many running opportunities outside the left tackle but when he has, he’s averaging over 8 yards a carry. Maybe the Chargers should run behind the budding star tackle more often.

4. Azeez Ojulari (LB, New York Giants)

The New York Giants needed a game-changing edge rusher, after having all their sack leaders come from the interior a season ago. They went out and drafted Azeez Ojulari out of Georgia, and he looks the part.

The current rookie leader with 5.5 sacks, his pressures (27), and disruption of opposing offenses extend his impact beyond sack totals.

He possesses an elite bend and burst off the edge, and it causes tackles to either hold or let him go. Teams have started to chip him with a tight end to help their tackle cope with his speed and quickness.

5. Kyle Pitts (TE, Atlanta Falcons)

The Atlanta Falcons tight end has been on a steady trajectory this season, but he didn’t break out until the past two weeks with 16 receptions for 282 yards.

Pitts was touted as the “most talented” receiver in the NFL draft and recently he’s showcasing his elite catch radius, ball skills and route-running.

The new-age hybrid tight end has arrived, with deep speed that makes corners have to cover him, as most safeties and linebackers can’t run with him. He’s a definite cornerstone of the Falcons’ future.

Honorable Mention:

The Cleveland Browns have been searching for a cornerback opposite Denzel Ward for a couple seasons. They have their guy in Greg Newsome II, who’s only allowed 115 receiving yards on 147 coverage snaps.

Creed Humphrey — A young, dominant center who’s performed solidly despite all the troubles the Chiefs have had.

Micah Parsons — It was a bye week for the Cowboys defensive “Swiss Army Knife,” but he’ll be back wreaking havoc on offenses from multiple spots. 

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