2019 has been a season in which the defensive rookie of the year has made more headlines than any of the rookies on the offense. In fact, there have been three rookies on the defensive side of the ball that have been very impressive. Let’s take a look at who three of our writers think should be in contention for winning the award in 2019.

Mark Ross: Nick Bosa

With the number two pick in the draft the San Francisco 49ers selected Nick Bosa and even they couldn’t have imagined the effect that he would have on their defense. His stats are impressive for a rookie with nine sacks, a forced fumble and an interception. If you have watched Bosa this season you would realise that it’s the pressure he is getting to opposing quarterbacks that makes him the odds on favourite for this award. He has 19 quarterback hurries and 38 quarterback pressures both of which are good for top 11 amongst players in the NFL.

With a big performance in week 17 against Seattle he will end the season with 10 sacks and further prove why he was rightly voted to the pro bowl. He is the only candidate for the defensive rookie of the year award to be selected to the pro bowl and that alone shows the effect he has had on the league. I’m confident that he is delighted to be voted to the pro bowl but if he continues his fine performances into the postseason then he will lead the 49ers defense all the way to the Super Bowl and what a rookie year that will be.

Paul Mainwaring: Nick Bosa

What a gene pool the Bosa family must have! Firstly Joey enters the league and reeks havoc and now Nick has been nothing sort of spectacular in his first season. As per PFF Bosa leads all defenders in QB pressures, not rookies but defenders!! In terms of rookies he leads them in sacks, QB hits and QB hurries which is pretty special. Finally though, the 49ers defense was poor last season and this year it is one of the best and Bosa is the main reason for this. Bosa is a slam dunk as DROY for me.

Ben Rolfe: The Linebackers

Week 4 picks

I will start by saying this award belongs to Nick Bosa, but it would be wrong to not mention both Devin White and Devin Bush. Both rookies have been thrown into the fire this year at perhaps the toughest position on defense. Both have held their own and put up great performances. I was pitch side in London when Devin White chased Christian McCaffrey all over the field and was extremely successful at limiting his opportunities.

I have also watched a lot of Bush this season, who has been a key middle piece of that Steelers defense. His three turnovers and just one sack mean that his exploits have been dwarfed by his team mates T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick. However, that does not mean he does not deserve a mention.

For me, White has had the ever so slightly better season of the two. He has missed less tackles, got more sacks and, despite allowing a higher completion percentage against him, has limited receivers to a lower yards per target than Bush. I look forward to watching these two ply their trade in the league for a very long time.

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