No NFL rookie impressed fans more this year than C.J. Stroud.
The former Ohio State quarterback was named Tuesday as the Pepsi Rookie of the Year, an award voted on by fans to select the league’s top first-year player.
Stroud becomes the second Buckeye to win the Pepsi Rookie of the Year since its inauguration in 2002. Former Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa won the award after his rookie season with the San Francisco 49ers in 2019.
Stroud wins the award after a spectacular rookie season in which he threw for the third-most passing yards ever by an NFL rookie quarterback (4,108). He led the NFL in passing yards per game (273.5) and touchdown-to-interception ratio (23:5) and broke the record for the most passing attempts without an interception to start an NFL career (191). He also broke the single-game record for passing yards by a rookie quarterback (470) and tied the single-game record for passing touchdowns by a rookie quarterback (five) in a 39-37 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in which he led a game-winning touchdown drive.
Stroud led the Houston Texans to an AFC South title and a 45-14 win over the Cleveland Browns in his playoff debut, throwing for 274 yards and tying a rookie record with three passing touchdowns in his first postseason game.
The Pepsi Rookie of the Year Award will likely be just the first rookie of the year award Stroud wins today as he is also expected to win AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year – the league’s official rookie of the year award – during Thursday night’s NFL Honors ceremony, which begins at 9 p.m. and will be televised on CBS.