By Gio Annatelli – The GameDay
The 2022 NFL season was one to forget for the Los Angeles Rams. The offseason brought high hopes for LA, as they signed Matthew Stafford to a four-year extension and added Allen Robinson and Bobby Wagner in free agency.
However, the Super Bowl hangover hit like a truck for the Rams. After starting the season 2-1, things began to fall apart. On top of Stafford and Cooper Kupp missing eight games with injuries, the Rams finished third in the division with a 5-12 record and had a six-game losing streak at one point.
Kupp was on pace to have another terrific season, but his season was cut short due to injury. That only means Kupp will have a monster season in 2023 and win the Comeback Player of the Year award. Let’s take a look at the available NFL odds for the award.
The Case for Cooper Kupp to Win Comeback Player of the Year
On DraftKings Sportsbook, Kupp’s odds to win Comeback Player of the Year are currently at +1000. He is currently behind Damar Hamlin (-150), Trey Lance (+750), Tua Tagovailoa (+800), Russell Wilson (+900), and Lamar Jackson (+950). Fellow LA Ram Matthew Stafford is right behind Kupp at +1200.
Each of those players has a legitimate shot of winning the award, as all have faced adversity in one way or another. Most were plagued with injuries and unfortunate circumstances, while others just had bad seasons.
Kupp’s Historic 2021 Season Bolsters His Case as a Candidate for Comeback Player of the Year.
Kupp came off an incredible season in 2021, winning Offensive Player of the Year and becoming the first receiver in NFL history with 2,000+ receiving yards combined in a regular season and postseason (1,947 regular season, 478 postseason). There was even an argument for Kupp to win the MVP award.
The 2022 NFL season was supposed to be another big year for Kupp, as he was on pace for similar numbers. In nine games, Kupp had 75 catches (98 targets) for 812 yards and six touchdowns. He also added nine carries for 52 yards and another score.
However, in Week 10 against the Arizona Cardinals, Kupp suffered a high ankle sprain, which required surgery and ended his season.
Even though Kupp was relishing in personal success, the Rams were struggling heavily. Heading into Week 10 against the Cardinals, Los Angeles had a 3-5 record and ended up losing that matchup against Arizona. They won only two more games the rest of the way.
So even with a fully healthy Kupp and Stafford, the Rams still didn’t look good and were not the same team that won the Super Bowl the previous year. But 2023 is a new season for Los Angeles.
The only significant loss on offense for the Rams this offseason was right guard David Edwards. Other than that, the main group stays intact and should be fully healthy heading into the year.
When fully healthy, Kupp is still one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. Defenses continue to struggle to keep Kupp in check, and whatever they throw out there just doesn’t work against him.
Kupp will come into 2023 with a vengeance after missing half of last season with an injury. So look for him to win the Comeback Player of the Year award this upcoming season.