Tuesday, January 5, 2010

All-Murawa Awards, NFL Edition

With the NFL season wrapping up, its time to hand out some of the least sought-after awards of the NFL season, the All-Murawa awards. While most will have no idea that they won these awards (thus saving me the trouble of having to get the trophies engraved and the prize money sent out), they are no less prestigious. Well, actually, on second thought, they probably are significantly less prestigious, by definition, but we can just gloss over that and get to handing these things out anyway.

Most Outstanding Player: Chris Johnson, RB, Tennessee – 2006 yards rushing, a new NFL record of 2509 total yards from scrimmage, 16 touchdowns. It’s hard to argue with those numbers. But perhaps the most impressive feat was rushing for 134 yards in week 17 against a Seattle defense stacking eight, nine and sometimes even ten guys in the box.

Most Valuable Player: Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans – led his Saints to a 13-3 record while posting the highest QB rating in the league (109.6), the most TD passes in the league (34, compared to only 11 INTs), averaged over 8.5 yards per pass attempt, and threw for an average of over 290 yards a game. Yup. That’ll work.

While the above may seem both repetitive and contradictory, we here at the All-Murawa team like to award both, the first to the best player in the league on any team, and the second to the best player in the league on a good team. While some years, this could be the same player (and frankly, Brees could have won both, and Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers got some consideration for both as well), Johnson was the most dominant player in the league on an average (at best) team, while Brees led his team through a strong season to a first-round playoff bye.

Defensive Player of the Year: Darrelle Revis, CB, New York Jets – The Jets had the best defense in the league this year, allowed the fewest yards per game and allowed the fewest points, and part of the reason for their success was their ability to put Revis on an island against the other team’s best receiver and allow the rest of the players to forget about that section of the field. He wound up with six interceptions, and an NFL-leading 37 passes defended, while continually shutting down his man.

Rookie of the Year: Brian Cushing, LB, Houston – Cushing was fifth in the league in tackles and added five sacks and four interceptions, becoming an instantaneous leader for the Texan defense.

All-NFL Team – nevermind the fact that both my offense and defense feature 12 players on each team. They’re good enough that they don’t need all 11, but deserve 12.

New Orleans, Philadelphia and the Jets all wound up with three players on the first team (and each added a player on the second team). Indy and Minnesota wound up with four players on the two teams combined.

And, to make up for leaving the following players off of this list, I’ll mention Peyton Manning, Larry Fitzgerald, and Kris Dielman as the three players I had the hardest time omitting.

Anyway, without further ado, here is two teams worth of my All-NFL team.

All-NFL First Team
QB Drew Brees, New Orleans
RB Chris Johnson, Tennessee
RB Ray Rice, Baltimore
FB Leonard Weaver, Philadelphia
WR Andre Johnson, Houston
WR Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis
TE Dallas Clark, Indianapolis
C Nick Mangold, New York Jets
G Ryan Lilja, Indianapolis
G Jahri Evans, New Orleans
T Ryan Clady, Denver
T Michael Roos, Tennessee

DT Jay Ratliff, Dallas
DT Haloti Ngata, Baltimore
DE Jared Allen, Minnesota
DE Trent Cole, Philadelphia
ILB Patrick Willis, San Francisco
ILB David Harris, New York Jets
OLB Elvis Dumervil, Denver
OLB Brian Cushing, Houston
CB Charles Woodson, Green Bay
CB Darrelle Revis, New York Jets
SS Adrian Wilson, Arizona
FS Darren Sharper, New Orleans

K Sebastian Janikowski, Oakland
P Shane Lechler, Oakland
KR DeSean Jackson, Philadelphia

All-NFL Second Team
QB Philip Rivers, San Diego
RB Adrian Peterson, Minnesota
RB Steven Jackson, St. Louis
FB Ahmard Hall, Tennessee
WR Wes Welker, New England
WR Randy Moss, New England
TE Antonio Gates, San Diego
C Ryan Kalil, Carolina
G Steve Hutchinson, Minnesota
G Alan Faneca, New York Jets
T Jake Long, Miami
T Jon Stinchcomb, New Orleans

DT Kevin Williams, Minnesota
DT Jonathan Babineaux, Atlanta
DE Dwight Freeney, Indianapolis
DE Julius Peppers, Carolina
ILB Jon Beason, Carolina
ILB James Laurinaitis, St. Louis
OLB DeMarcus Ware, Dallas
OLB Clay Matthews, Green Bay
CB Leon Hall, Cincinnati
CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Arizona
SS Brian Dawkins, Denver
FS Antoine Bethea, Indianapolis

K David Akers, Philadelphia
P Andy Lee, San Francisco
KR Josh Cribbs, Cleveland