>Tuesday Lunch: Midseason Awards

Posted: November 9, 2010 in nfl
Tags: , ,

>By Will Robinson
 
By this week, every NFL team has played at least eight games. Therefore, I will be handing out my midseason All-Pro team and awards. I’ll factor in performance, how well the team is doing, and a bit of personal preference. I’ll pick one at each position, but since there has been a lack of importance of fullbacks in the modern NFL, I’ll put up three wide receivers.

 
Quarterback
Philip Rivers, Chargers
Weapons have been dropping left and right for Rivers, and he still rolls on putting up fantastic numbers. The Chargers are 3-5, but without him, I don’t see how they could have a win on the board this year. The same case could be made for Peyton Manning, but Manning has had a more complete, consistent core around him while Rivers’ Chargers are a special teams nightmare, and they started Seyi Ajirotutu (who?) last week (Yes, Seyi had a good performance, but did most of you know who he was before his bomb from Rivers? Doubtful). Rivers is on pace to beat Dan Marino’s single season passing yardage record by about 200, and he’s doing it without his top targets.
 
Running Back
Arian Foster, Texans
Known as “Fumbles Foster” his senior year at Tennessee, the undrafted free agent has taken the league by storm. Despite turning in some subpar rushing performances (weeks two, five, and six), Foster leads the league in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. He has also racked up five 100-yard rushing games in eight games and has only fumbled once this year.
 
Wide Receiver
Roddy White, Falcons
White has lit up the statistics board with some of his performances this year, including the 11 catch, 201 yard, two-touchdown one he punished Cincinnati with in week seven. His worst performance came against Tampa Bay facing up against another person on this list, as well as being hurt in the contest. Fantastic year so far for Mr. White.
 
Brandon Lloyd Wide receiver Brandon Lloyd #84 of the Denver Broncos catches a 16 yard pass against Trumaine McBride #26 of the Chicago Bears during the third quarter at INVESCO Field at Mile High on August 30, 2009 in Denver, Colorado.Brandon Lloyd, Broncos
I didn’t really want to put him on this list, but the numbers speak for themselves: 42 catches, 878 yards (league leading), four touchdowns, and a 20.9 yard per reception average. Of the people in the top 20 receptions leaders, Lloyd has the highest average. Lloyd has been phenomenal this year, despite the Broncos not.
 
Hakeem Nicks, Giants
The second year man from North Carolina is making a name for himself this year. Nicks is one of the best deep threats developing in the league, with nine touchdowns and 14 receptions of 20 yards or greater (tied with Antonio Gates for second place, behind Lloyd’s 17). He is also the fifth leading receptions man in the league, so it’s not all bombs too him.
 
Tight End
Antonio Gates, Chargers
He has been LIGHTS OUT this year. This is the easiest pick of any player on this list.
 
Offensive Tackle
Jake Long, Dolphins
D’Brickashaw Ferguson, Jets
 
Offensive Guard
Chris Snee, Giants
Ryan Lilja, Chiefs
 
Center
Alex Mack, Browns
 
Defensive Tackle
Haloti Ngata, Ravens
He’s the best nose tackle in the game right now. He is critical to the success of the Baltimore defense. He’s possibly the most irreplaceable player on that D, save for Ray Lewis.
 
Ndamukong Suh, Lions
Suh is only a rookie and he is one of the most aggressive inside presences in the league. He leads all DTs and rookies in sacks and has scored a defensive touchdown. Also, he ALMOST made an extra point (note the awesome Gus Johnson call on a non-exciting play).
 
Defensive End
Osi Umenyiora, Giants
After a down year with only seven sacks, Umenyiora has come back full force this year with eight sacks in eight games. Osi has additionally forced a career high seven fumbles this year with eight more games to play. He and Justin Tuck are a great pass rushing combo, but Osi is on top of his game right now.
 
Trent Cole, Eagles
Another great year in progress for Cole, with seven sacks recorded on the year.
 
Linebackers
Clay Matthews, Packers
The NFL’s current sack leader is a no-brainer for this list. 10.5 sacks and a pick six, but has slowed down since week two (six sacks through two games); however, he has looked great and has also missed a game.
 
Jerod Mayo, Patriots
Mayo has the most tackles on the year, with 96 through eight games. He is currently on pace for a crazy 192 tackles on the year. Even though the Patriots’ defense hasn’t been consistently good this year, they are looking a lot better this year with Mayo back in the lineup.
 
Lawrence Timmons, Steelers
Timmons has FINALLY come into his own this year. Seventy-eight tackles, three sacks, and two interceptions for the formidable Steelers’ defense. I was debating between Timmons and his teammate, James Harrison, but I have liked Timmons this year.
 
Cornerbacks
Aqib Talib, Buccaneers
Aqib Talib has one of the coolest names in recent year, and he has improved every year he has been in the league. At the midpoint of the year, Talib has as many picks this year as last year, his career high. Talib also did a very good job on Roddy White last week, holding him under 50 yards and no scores. I think he is a top-five corner this year.
 
Nnamdi Asomugha, Raiders
Nnamdi is up to his old ways. He was not quite the same player last year, but he is back in full force with a strong-looking Oakland squad.
 
Safeties
LaRon Landry, Redskins
Landry has been another revelation this year. Landry is a top ten tackler this year, and has also played the safety position with an Ed Reed-esque demeanor.
 
Troy Polamalu, Steelers
The Pittsburgh defense looks massively defense with a healthy Polamalu in the starting 11. His statistics may not be as good as some other safeties, but the performance difference with him starting versus him absent is extremely noticeable.
 
Kicker
Dan Carpenter, Dolphins
 
Punter
Shane Lechler, Oakland
 
 

MVP
Rivers
 
Offensive Player of the Year
Foster
 
Defensive Player of the Year
Matthews
 
Coach of the Year
Tom Cable, Raiders093008cable1_1(1)
Al Davis finally kept some consistency in Oakland, and look what has happened: the Raiders are .500 this late in the season for the first time since their Super Bowl season in 2002. Darren McFadden is now looking like the play that warranted the fourth overall selection in 2008. Their offense and defense has been firing on all cylinders, averaging a 26-point margin of victory during their three-game win streak. Props to Oakland, who may finally be relevant again.
 
Offensive Rookie of the Year
Mike Williams, Buccaneers
The fourth rounder from Syracuse is the 12th leading receiver this season, as well as recording five touchdowns thus far. Williams has the talent to turn into something special and develop a special rapport with the young Josh Freeman.
 
Defensive Rookie of the Year
Suh
 
Now on to quick list of my week ten previews:
Best Game per Time Slot of Week 10
Thursday 5:20 PM PDT
Baltimore Ravens vs. Atlanta Falcons
 

10:00 AM PDT
Tennessee Titans vs. Miami Dolphins
 

1:05-1:15 PM PDT
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos
If you have a choice, do something better in your afternoon.
 
Best Game of Week 10
New England Patriots vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
 
Most Interesting Game of Week 10
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Washington Redskins
 

Bounce Back Performance of Week 10
New England
May not win, but should hopefully be competitive against a great Pittsburgh team.
 
Down to Earth Performance of Week 10
Cleveland Browns
 

Bold Predictions of Week 10
· Denver will win.
· Randy Moss doesn’t make an impact (either no big plays or receiving no safety respect)
· Troy Smith loses his grasp on the Niners starting job.

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Comments
  1. >As much as the Steelers are a disliked team by this blogteam, I absolutely love your Polamalu pick. Having seen Pittsburgh in prime time the past two weeks and in their game against Baltimore, opposing teams have a TREMENDOUS amount of respect for Polamalu. I am likewise not overwhelmed by his statistics, but time and time again I watch teams run to the side of the line opposite of Polamalu. On one distinct play from the Steelers game on Monday against Cincinnati, Polamalu crept up to the line of scrimmage from his safety spot, prompting Bengals QB Carson Palmer to audible away from Polamalu's side. Nonetheless, Polamalu broke the line and sprinted across the whole offensive line, bringing down Cedric Benson in impressive fashion. Polamalu is on a short, short list of impact players who's teams are severely damaged by his absence. The Steelers suffered dramatically without him in 11 games during 2009 (blame the Madden curse??)

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