SAN DIEGO -- Voters chose the workhorse running back over the flashy receiver in voting Green Bay’s Eddie Lacy over San Diego’s Keenan Allen for the 2013 Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year Award.
It’s not surprising that Lacy won the award. But the margin of victory was greater than expected, with Lacy receiving 35 first-place votes compared to 12 first-place votes for Allen.
Lacy is deserving of the honor. He rushed for 1,178 yards on 284 carries (4.1 average) and 11 touchdowns, helping the Packers make a postseason push without the services of standout quarterback Aaron Rodgers for most of the final stretch of the season.
However, the Chargers would not have made it to the final eight of the NFL postseason tournament without the explosive playmaking ability of Allen.
Considered more of a development player in his first season, Allen was called into action after the seasons of starting receivers Danario Alexander (knee) and Malcom Floyd (neck) were cut short due to injury.
A third-round draft pick by the Chargers out of Cal, Allen more than held his own when thrown into the starting lineup. He finished the regular season with a rookie-leading 71 receptions for 1,046 yards. Allen also tied for the team lead in touchdowns with eight.
In the postseason, Allen totaled eight catches for 183 yards and two touchdowns, emerging as San Diego’s No. 1 receiver.
Allen should have won the award because of his game-changing plays and overall production during the second half of the season. In the last eight games of the regular season, Allen finished with 37 catches for 519 yards and five touchdowns.
Allen could use the snub as fuel to put up even better numbers in his second season.