Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver JA’MARR CHASE has been named the 2021 PEPSI ZERO SUGAR NFL ROOKIE OF THE YEAR, Pepsi and the NFL announced today. Chase was recognized online at nfl.com/rookies and was awarded a custom designed, Pepsi Zero Sugar branded Rookie of the Year trophy to celebrate his record breaking season on the field and off.
As the No. 5 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, Chase led all rookies and ranked fourth in the NFL with 1,455 receiving yards, the most by a rookie in the Super Bowl era, while his 13 touchdown receptions were the third-most in the league this season. In Week 17, he recorded 266 receiving yards, the most ever by a rookie in a single game. He also recorded 201 receiving yards in Week 7 and became the first rookie ever and the fifth player in the Super Bowl era to record multiple games with at least 200 receiving yards in a single season, joining Pro Football Hall of Famers CALVIN JOHNSON (2011 & 2012) and DON MAYNARD (1968) as well as JOSH GORDON (2013) and ALSHON JEFFERY (2013). Chase became the fifth rookie in the Super Bowl era with at least 1,000 receiving yards and 10 touchdown receptions, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer RANDY MOSS (1998), ODELL BECKHAM JR. (2014), MIKE EVANS (2014) and JOHN JEFFERSON (1978).
Chase was one of six finalists nominated for this honor. The other finalists were Steelers running back Najee Harris, Patriots quarterback Mac Jones, Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons, Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts and Dolphins wide receiver Jaylen Waddle.
The six finalists were selected for their outstanding performances through the 2021 NFL season. Each week, six nominees were chosen for the Pepsi Zero Sugar NFL Rookie of the Week and fans voted for the winner on NFL.com. Those results were used to help determine the finalists.
This is the Pepsi brand’s 21st year as the official soft drink sponsor of the NFL and the 20th year that Pepsi will present the NFL Rookie of the Week and NFL Rookie of the Year award. In the first year where fans could vote online and through Twitter, the Pepsi Zero Sugar NFL Rookie of the Year award had more votes than any other year in the 19-year history.