Chase Young wins AP Comeback Player of the Year in Commanders bold predictions

(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports) Chase Young
(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports) Chase Young /

The Washington Commanders will be without Chase Young to start the 2022 season, as Ron Rivera confirmed to reporters last week. Young is currently behind Logan Thomas in their recoveries from torn ACLs, but Rivera acknowledged they were different injuries, indicating Young’s tear was more serious.

Whatever the details, Young’s absence is a huge blow for Washington, which doesn’t have the requisite edge depth to get by for very long.

Give Young (seemingly) isn’t close to returning to practice, it’s possible he opens the year on the PUP list or injured reserve. Either designation would knock him out four games and based on Rivera’s update, it sounds like a real possibility.

Regardless of when he returns, Young should still have a huge say in the Commanders’ performance this season, assuming he doesn’t suffer a setback.

Will the former Defensive Rookie of the Year hit the ground running upon returning or take time to get back into the swing of things? If you asked FanSided NFL writer Russell Baxter, he’d choose the former pretty convincingly.

In a recent article, Baxter unveiled one bold prediction for all 32 teams. For Washington, he has Young winning AP Comeback Player of the Year honors.

Could Commanders edge rusher Chase Young win AP Comeback Player of the Year this season?

Young winning Comeback Player of the Year isn’t as crazy as it sounds.

Last campaign, Nick Bosa, coming off a torn ACL suffered the season prior, erupted for 15.5 sacks, a league-leading 21.5 tackles for loss, 32 quarterback hits, 75 pressures and four forced fumbles. His ACL tear admittedly occurred in Week 2 of 2020, which allowed him to play all 17 games last season.

While Young won’t have that luxury, he won’t have nearly as big of a competitive field for the award. Last year, Joe Burrow took home the honors over Dak Prescott, both of whom suffered major leg injuries in 2020, after he led the Bengals to a Super Bowl appearance and posted mind-boggling numbers along the way.

This year, however, Jameis Winston (torn ACL) and Baker Mayfield (shoulder surgery and traded from Cleveland after the Deshaun Watson blockbuster) are the only quarterbacks in contention for the award. We suppose you can throw Daniel Jones in there, but he’s not coming back from a major injury.

The prime candidates include Derrick Henry, who missed nine games with a fractured foot. The Titans superstar is the prohibitive favorite, but Saints wideout Michael Thomas, Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey, Chiefs receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and Ravens running back JK Dobbins all have enticing odds.

If Young can get back in a timely fashion (no later than Week 5) and play up to his potential, there’s no reason he shouldn’t be in contention for the award. That’s asking a lot for a player who suffered a torn ACL in late November of last year, but he’s attacked his rehab like someone who’s out to prove something to his doubters.

Next. Best remaining FAs if Chase Young goes on IR. dark