NFL News: Cincinnati Bengals Wide Receiver Ja’Marr Chase Named 2021 PEPSI® Zero Sugar NFL Rookie of the Year

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Winner Selected by Record Number of Fan Votes via Twitter and on

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 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.

Ja’Marr Chase Bengals WR celebrating AFC North title 2021 (courtesy Bengals Communications)

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 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. 

About PepsiCo:

PepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers more than one billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated $70 billion in net revenue in 2020, driven by a complementary beverage and convenient foods portfolio that includes Lays, Doritos, Cheetos, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Mountain Dew, Quaker, and SodaStream. PepsiCo’s product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including many iconic brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales.

Guiding PepsiCo is our vision to Be the Global Leader in Beverages and Convenient Foods by Winning with PepsiCo Positive (pep+). pep+ is our strategic end-to-end transformation that puts sustainability at the center of how we will create value and growth by operating within planetary boundaries and inspiring positive change for planet and people. For more information, visit


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