The NFL opens Week 15 with the playoff and awards races heating up. While it may not feel like it, there are only four more weeks to the regular season. That means that players have four more weeks to make any runs at awards or records for the regular season. Sarcasm aside, since players don’t have those types of things on their minds when playing week-to-week, it is a good time to check in to see where the odds for award winners sit.
Heading into this week’s games, it is a two-player race for the Defensive Player of the Year award. Dallas Cowboys LB Micah Parsons leads San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa. Parsons is the favorite at DraftKings Sportsbook with -280 odds, while Bosa is installed at +175.
Parsons has wasted little time cementing himself as the most impactful Dallas defender. While Trevon Diggs is the face of the secondary, Parsons is in the trenches making an impact. He has the third-most tackles on the team and has 12 sacks. Parsons has three passes defended as well as three forced fumbles. When you see guys like TJ Watt and Aaron Darnold that have won this award in four of the last five seasons, Parsons fits that bill. He terrorizes backfields and is a player that the opposing quarterback always has to be aware of. He and Bosa play similarly, but his extra tackles and forced fumbles are likely what is keeping him in front, albeit barely. Parsons and the Cowboys will take on the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, December 18 at 1 p.m. ET.
If you want to get a look at what Bosa has to offer a defense, take a look at him taking on the Seattle Seahawks for Week 15’s Thursday Night Football game. Bosa did miss a game with an injury which takes an unfortunate hit on his chances. He still has 14.5 sacks which is tied for the most in the NFL. Bosa has 39 total tackles and has forced one fumble on the year. He is a phenomenal player, but the one fewer game could prove to be the difference-maker unless he is able to tally some extra sacks or forced fumbles along the way. Bosa fits the typical profile of the award winner, but his accolades get overshadowed just enough by Parsons, who has been more well-rounded this season.