Believe it or not the National Football League is entering week nine which means we are at the half-way point of the 2014 season. I couldn’t live with myself (OK I probably could) if I didn’t give you my thoughts on who is headed for the podium to receive awards. I’m also going to give you some awards that might not necessarily appear in most publications.
NFL Most Valuable Player
DeMarco Murray. The easy answer here is always Peyton Manning and he is having an MVP-worthy season and will probably win it but I’m going with Murray. Behind a much-improved offensive line, Murray has been absolutely dominant in leading the Cowboys to a 6-2 record. Others: Philip Rivers, J.J. Watt, Ben Roethlisberger
NFL Offensive Player of the Year
Manning. With all due to respect to Murray who could eclipse 2,000 yards rushing, my gut feeling is that Manning’s numbers will be hard to ignore. The fact that he’s 38 years old doesn’t hurt his chances either. Others: Rivers,Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell,
NFL Defensive Player of the Year
J.J. Watt. The only reason I’m even mentioning this is because there is still half the season to go but to this point Watt is the front-runner by miles. Others: Von Miller, Justin Houston
NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year
Odell Beckham, Jr. Yup, I know… He’s hardly played this season but now that he’s healthy he’s been tearing it up and I believe he will continue to do so. Others: Kelvin Benjamin, Sammy Watkins
NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year
Anthony Barr. This could go to one of several guys but considering that Barr is basically the only true pass rushing threat the Vikings have that’s pretty damn good for a rookie. Others: C.J. Mosely, Ryan Shazier
NFL Coach of the Year
Bruce Arians. What more can we say about Arians? After “retiring” from the Steelers, he was the offensive coordinator that led rookie Andrew Luck into the playoffs then led the Cardinals to a 10-6 record last year. Now his Cards are 6-1 and he’s seen his team win with a banged up Carson Palmer and Drew Stanton at QB. Others: Jason Garrett, Jim Caldwell
Surprise Team of the Year
Detroit Lions. At 6-2, the Lions have gotten here despite injuries to Calvin Johnson and Reggie Bush. They’ve also pulled rabbits out of their hats in the last two weeks with crazy comebacks. Either way, wins are wins. Others: Cleveland Browns, San Diego Chargers
Coach on the Hottest Seat
Mike Smith, Falcons. There are worse records out there but Smith’s Falcons have been brutal over the last season and a half and Sunday’s loss in London was the clincher. Others: Rex Ryan, Joe Philbin
Most Irritating Owner
Jerry Jones, Cowboys. Jones is a media whore and the networks like ESPN just follow his every move like a lost puppy. Others: Jim Irsay
Luckiest Man in the NFL
Dennis Allen. The former Raiders’ head coach was the first casualty of the season and he couldn’t have been luckier to get out of there.
Best Celebration Award
Randall Cobb, Packers. Cobb’s recent “Lambeau Leap” wasn’t all that unusual until someone’s hot dog got ketchup all over his jersey. So red was it that the trainer had to make sure it wasn’t blood. Others: Jeremy Hill’s “Ickey Shuffle”
Most Disappointing Division
NFC South. 3-4-1 leads this division right now. ‘Nuff said.
Steelers Throwbacks. Flight of the Bumblebees is more like it.