Football Outsiders
Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis

2009 Football Outsiders Awards

comments by Aaron Schatz

This is now the seventh time we've done the Football Outsiders awards. Pretty crazy that we've been online this long, and doing these awards after every season, trying to get right what the official voters get wrong. (Oh, yeah, Jets fans, you know what I'm talking about there.) Every year we get a great mix of the expected and the unexpected, and this year is no exception. Once again, I would like to thank everyone who voted on the awards. My apologies for taking a little bit longer than usual to post the winners. Congratulations to the three readers who won free DVD copies of the movie Big Fan: Zach Feffer, William Guinn, and Philip Scott.

For those curious about past years, you will find links to each of the previous FO Awards articles on this page.

Who is your choice as Offensive MVP for 2009? (Last year's winner: Drew Brees)

50.2% Peyton Manning
19.6% Chris Johnson
19.5% Drew Brees
5.6% Philip Rivers
3.5% Brett Favre
1.7% Andre Johnson

Last year, Brees got the Football Outsiders MVP award. This year, he got a Super Bowl ring. I think I know which one is more important to him. Peyton Manning won the first two Offensive MVP awards in 2003 and 2004, but had not finished first in the voting since.

Who is your choice as Defensive MVP for 2009? (Last year's winner: Ed Reed)

66.4% Darrelle Revis
9.4% Charles Woodson
6.7% Jared Allen
5.9% Patrick Willis
5.4% Darren Sharper
2.6% DeMarcus Ware
2.3% Elvis Dumervil
1.4% Brian Cushing

OK, here are the winners of the Defensive MVP award with their percentage of the vote, each year since we began doing this in 2003 (technically, in January 2004):

Does any number jump out at you there? We had never seen one candidate get over half the vote, and then Revis wins the award with two-thirds of reader votes. And yet the actual NFL writers who vote on the official Defensive Player of the Year award gave the majority of their votes to Charles Woodson. What, because he had a couple more turnovers than Revis? The guy shut down everyone he played this year (except, maybe, Reggie Wayne in the first half of Week 16). I'm not sure what the guy had to do to actually win Defensive Player of the Year, maybe kill Randy Moss with his bare hands on national television while simultaneously picking off a Tom Brady pass using only his teeth.

Who is your choice as NFL Rookie of the Year for 2009? (Last year's winner: Matt Ryan)

34.3% Brian Cushing
26.9% Percy Harvin
13.2% Clay Matthews
10.0% Michael Oher
5.1% Brian Orakpo
4.9% Jarius Byrd
3.1% Mark Sanchez
2.5% Ray Maualuga

I wrote about Brian Cushing's amazing rookie season in November; the numbers didn't get any less awesome over the second half of the year. Cushing was the first rookie to lead the league in Defeats, going back to at least 1997. My gushing over Cushing isn't meant to take away from anyone's appreciation of Percy Harvin, who had an excellent rookie season and helped completely turn around the Minnesota special teams. By the way, before this year, weren't we all talking about how recent USC players had a poor track record in the pros? That didn't seem to be a problem in 2009, although somebody still needs to kick Dwayne Jarrett in the ass.

Who was the best offensive lineman of 2009? (open question, two votes per ballot, top 12 listed) (Last year's winner: Ryan Clady)

15.6% Nick Mangold (C, NYJ)
13.1% Joe Thomas (LT, CLE)
11.9% Ryan Clady (LT, DEN)
10.4% Jahri Evans (LG, NO)
10.1% Jeff Saturday (C, IND)
5.4% Jake Long (LT, MIA)
3.8% Alan Faneca (LG, NYJ)
3.8% Steve Hutchinson (LG, MIN)
2.2% Michael Roos (LT, TEN)
1.9% Michael Oher (RT, BAL)
1.8% Kris Dielman (LG, SD)
1.1% Carl Nicks (RG, NO)

This is the fourth straight year that our winner for best offensive lineman wasn't even in the top dozen the year before, but at least this time we've got a guy with a track record of success instead of an impact rookie destined for a sophomore slump. On the other hand, last year's winner Ryan Clady breaks the sophomore slump streak, and Joe Thomas had a strong third season (the "junior rebound?").

The appearances of Alan Faneca and, to a lesser extent, Steve Hutchinson show that even in Football Outsiders voting, just like in the Pro Bowl, reputation remains even after a player begins to decline in his later years.

As for the New Orleans Saints, how often do you have a team -- let alone a Super Bowl champion -- where the two best offensive linemen are the guards?

Who is your choice for NFL Coach of the Year in 2009? (Last year's winner: Tony Sparano)

34.0% Sean Payton
22.7% Rex Ryan
17.2% Jim Caldwell
11.5% Marvin Lewis
7.6% Norv Turner
3.8% Mike Singletary
1.7% Ken Whisenhunt
1.7% Brad Childress

Sean Payton and Rex Ryan: Not just the best coaches of 2009, but the most fun. Payton runs the most interesting offense in the league. Ryan runs the most interesting defense. Both of them give great quote. Now, who wants to hire Rob Ryan? Come on, someone out there wants to hire Rob Ryan as a head coach, right?

Who is your choice for the Bill Arnsparger Award for Coordinator of the Year? (Last year's winner: Dick LeBeau)

35.7% Gregg Williams, NO defense
17.4% Mike Zimmer, CIN defense
16.3% Dom Capers, GB defense
14.0% Mike Nolan, DEN defense
11.3% Mike Pettine, NYJ defense
2.7% Brian Murphy, MIN special teams
1.5% Cam Cameron, BAL offense
1.1% Jason Garrett, DAL offense

A fitting exclamation point to a season that will go down in NFL history as "The Year of the Defensive Coordinator." (OK, maybe not everywhere, but certainly around Football Outsiders it will.)

Who is your choice for the Keep Choppin' Wood Award for 2009 (player who most hurt his team)? (Last year's winner: Plaxico Burress and his magic sweatpants holster)

42.4% JaMarcus Russell
35.5% Jake Delhomme
6.1% C.C. Brown
5.6% The corpse of Orlando Pace
4.8% Kris Brown
3.5% Kerry Collins
1.1% Nick Folk
1.1% LaRon Landry

The conclusion: interceptions are bad, but the total inability to even complete a pass is even worse. Everybody who writes about the league is patting themselves on the back because we were all completely right about Oakland's fakakta decision to draft Darrius Heyward-Bey seventh. But at a certain point, when are all the talent evaluators in the media going to be honest about how wrong they were about JaMarcus Russell? We all make fun of the guy, and we make fun of Oakland because he's never developed, but almost everyone out there thought the Raiders were making the right pick when they took Russell number one. Folks like Mel Kiper and Todd McShay need to step back and say, "Hey, I was wrong about Russell, and this is why, and this is what it means for how we evaluate quarterback talent in the future." This is one prediction that the Lewin Career Forecast completely and totally nailed. (As for Brady Quinn, well... 1-for-2 isn't bad, right?)

Who is your choice for the Keep Choppin' Game Film Award for the worst coach of 2009? (Last year's winner: Rod Marinelli)

22.0% Bill Sheridan, NYG defense
19.8% Jim Mora, SEA head coach
18.0% Ron Turner, CHI offense
17.1% Jim Zorn, WAS head coach
11.9% Bob Ligashesky, PIT special teams
11.1% Dick Jauron, BUF head coach

I had a hard time coming up for nominees for this award in 2009, because how much do you really want to blame the head coaches of bad teams? Is Jim Schwartz to blame after he took over a Detroit franchise in tatters? Is Steve Spagnuolo responsible for the lack of talent in St. Louis? You have to be on crack to blame Tom Cable for the mess in Oakland. So we went with the idea of adding assistant coaches to the voting; it seemed like we had a number of teams in 2009 where one unit in particular underperformed, but you don't want to fully blame the head coach. Sure, Tom Coughlin is the one who promoted Bill Sheridan after Spagnuolo left for St. Louis, but whose fault was the Giants' defensive faceplant really?

Who is your choice for the Art Rooney Jr. Award for Executive(s) of the Year? (Last year's winner: Bill Parcells)

44.5% Bill Polian, IND
16.6% Mickey Loomis, NO
12.0% Ted Thompson, GB
10.9% Mike Tannenbaum, NYJ
8.2% Ozzie Newsome, BAL
7.8% Rick Spielman, MIN

Polian does a great job every year, of course, but this year seemed particularly remarkable, as the Colts started two rookie cornerbacks for most of the season and replaced not only Marvin Harrison but also the replacement for Marvin Harrison with a second-year receiver from the sixth round and a rookie receiver from the fourth.

Who is your choice for the John Elway Award for disappointing highly-drafted rookie who turns things around with an impressive sophomore season? (Last year's winner: LaMarr Woodley)

63.4% Ray Rice
15.2% Rashard Mendenhall
9.5% Michael Jenkins
3.4% Felix Jones
2.8% Fred Davis
2.5% Calais Campbell
2.2% Aqib Talib
1.1% Terrell Thomas

This one was pretty easy. It's hard to believe that Ray Rice had just 454 rushing yards and no touchdowns as a rookie.

Who was the least deserving pick for the Pro Bowl on offense (not including injury replacements): (open question, top 10 listed) (Last year's "most overrated": Brett Favre)

37.0% Bryant McKinnie
8.9% Jason Peters
8.4% Brandon Marshall
4.5% Tom Brady
3.6% Alan Faneca
3.4% Steve Hutchinson
3.0% Wes Welker
1.8% Andre Gurode
1.8% Adrian Peterson
1.8% DeAngelo Williams

This question replaces our old category of "most overrated." We always had a problem figuring out what the qualifications were there, so the votes would be all over the map. This makes more sense. I've disqualified votes for players who were not original Pro Bowl picks, such as David Garrard (who would have finished sixth). McKinnie is an excellent choice, as the whole Minnesota offensive line was completely overrated this year.

Who was the least deserving pick for the Pro Bowl on defense (not including injury replacements): (open question, top 10 listed) (Last year's "most overrated": Ray Lewis)

15.4% Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie
11.2% Ray Lewis
9.5% Brian Dawkins
8.3% Asante Samuel
5.4% Champ Bailey
4.6% Julius Peppers
4.4% Lance Briggs
4.2% Ed Reed
2.7% James Harrison
2.2% Jarius Byrd

Ladies and gentlemen, we have broken the streak. Ray Lewis won this award for five straight seasons, but this year he comes in second to pick-happy but not-quite-polished Arizona cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. We had to change the wording of the question to do it, but we did finally get a different winner. Of course, our game charting stats now suggest that DRC may not be as overrated as we once thought, as he improved over the second half of the season.

The most overrated special teams player in the NFL is: (open question, top eight listed) (Last year's winner: Devin Hester)

21.7% Devin Hester
16.5% Adam Vinatieri
12.4% Nate Kaeding
11.5% Reggie Bush
3.8% David Akers
3.2% Jeff Feagles
3.2% Johnny Knox
2.9% Shane Lechler

Hester's longest punt return this year went 33 yards, and he had only one kickoff return before Week 17. It really is astonishing how quickly the best return men come back to earth.

The most deserving offensive player left off the original Pro Bowl roster is: (open question, top 10 listed) (Last year's "most underrated": John Carlson)

33.2% Vincent Jackson
9.6% Matt Schaub
3.5% Cedric Benson
3.5% Randy Moss
3.2% Thomas Jones
2.4% Ben Roethlisberger
2.1% Brent Celek
1.9% Ryan Grant
1.9% Kurt Warner
1.9% Roddy White

Yes, Matt Schaub eventually won Pro Bowl MVP even though he was not originally supposed to be in the game. He was fourth on the AFC's quarterback list, behind Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, and Philip Rivers. Which is, let's be honest, exactly where he belongs. He didn't really deserve to make the Pro Bowl ahead of those three guys, despite an excellent season. Vincent Jackson, on the other hand, got screwed by the Pro Bowl. Can't someone give this guy an endorsement deal or something to raise his level of fame? Vincent, if you are reading, we'll pay you fifty bucks to let us use your picture on the cover of Football Outsiders Almanac 2010. You deserve the exposure. E-mail your response to Contact Us.

The most deserving defensive player left off the original Pro Bowl roster is: (open question, top 10 listed) (Last year's "most underrated": Brandon Mebane)

16.7% London Fletcher
6.6% Leon Hall
5.5% Clay Matthews
4.6% Gary Brackett
4.6% Justin Smith
4.3% Jon Beason
4.3% Jabari Greer
4.3% LaMarr Woodley
3.4% David Harris
3.4% Michael Jenkins

So I'm in Indianapolis last week and I sit down with the folks from NFL Films to tape some bits for the upcoming season of Top 10. One of the shows is going to be "best undrafted players." I look at the list. No London Fletcher. He's not even listed under "Best of the Rest." Another one of the shows is "best short players." I look at the list. No London Fletcher: not in the top ten, not in the "Best of the Rest." Come on, people. Suffice it to say, I made sure they taped me saying that it was ridiculous not to have Fletcher in the top ten for both categories. Maybe that will help put him (and video of me) in the "Best of the Rest" portions of both shows. Fletcher did eventually make it to the Pro Bowl this year, finally, as a "Super Bowl replacement" for Jonathan Vilma.

The most underrated special teams player in the NFL is: (open question, top eight listed) (Last year's winner: Mike Scifres)

11.7% Sebastian Janikowski
9.3% Johnny Knox
7.8% Mike Scifres
4.3% Ryan Longwell
3.5% Courtney Roby
3.1% Donnie Jones
2.7% Pat McAfee
2.7% Brian Moor

Sea Bass was 26-for-29 on field goals in 2009, and his only misses were from 45 (hard), 57 (extremely hard), and 66 (three yards longer than the NFL record).

Player most likely to breakout in 2010 (open question, top 12 listed): (Last year's winner: Anthony Gonzalez)

7.4% Michael Crabtree
5.8% Shonn Greene
5.8% Matt Leinart
3.6% Jamaal Charles
3.1% Devin Aromashodu
3.1% Anthony Gonzalez
2.9% Jerome Harrison
2.9% Beanie Wells
2.1% Steve Slaton
1.9% Ray Rice
1.7% Joe Flacco
1.7% Limas Sweed

By break out, we did not mean "break himself and fall out of the lineup," but that's what Anthony Gonzalez did after readers picked him a year ago. As for this year's winner, Crabtree should hit that 1,000-yard projection that we made for him in FOA 2009 before we knew he was going to hold out like an idiot. But seriously, Devin Aromashodu? Dude does nothing for three and a half years, and some readers are excited about a couple games at the end of his fourth season? I don't really see it.

By the way, what would Ray Rice have to do to break out more than he already has broken out? Fly?

Player most likely to significantly decline in 2010 (open question, top 12 listed): (Last year's winner: Kurt Warner)

19.6% Brett Favre
8.4% Chris Johnson
7.3% Thomas Jones
7.1% Randy Moss
4.9% Tom Brady
4.9% Ray Lewis
4.2% Adrian Peterson
2.7% Donovan McNabb
2.2% Cedric Benson
2.2% Darren Sharper
2.0% Wes Welker
1.8% LaDainian Tomlinson

When you have the best numbers of your career at age 40, yeah, that's usually not going to be repeatable.

Which of the following teams is most likely next year's surprise Super Bowl contender? (Last year's choice: Green Bay)

43.5% San Francisco
18.0% Chicago
10.5% Jacksonville
8.8% Washington
4.5% Kansas City
3.9% Seattle
3.1% Cleveland
2.0% Tampa Bay
1.6% Detroit
1.6% Oakland
1.4% St. Louis
1.1% Buffalo

We picked San Francisco as our favorite in the NFC West back in 2008, but apparently we were just a couple years too early. With Seattle and St. Louis rebuilding, San Francisco will make a popular pick in 2010, especially for all the Leinart doubters out there. Chicago could be a nice bounce back candidate if Mike Martz can fix Jay Cutler's head without getting him creamed in the process. I'm sick and tired of trying to figure out Jacksonville. Screw 'em. (Well, except MJD, he's awesome.)

Which playoff team is most likely to miss the playoffs in 2010? (Last year's choice: Miami)

44.0% Cincinnati
30.7% Arizona
9.2% New York Jets
4.3% Minnesota
2.9% Philadelphia
2.7% New England
2.1% Dallas
1.2% Baltimore
1.1% Green Bay
1.1% New Orleans
0.6% San Diego
0.2% Indianapolis

Ah, there are those Leinart doubters I just mentioned. Along with a lot of Cincinnati doubters. Count me in that second category, especially after watching Carson Palmer devolve in the AFC playoffs. Indianapolis may never miss another postseason until Peyton Manning retires around, oh, I don't know, age 50.

Which is your choice for Game of the Year in 2009? (Last year's choice: Arizona 32, Philadelphia 25 in the NFC Championship)

34.6% Wild Card Round: Green Bay Packers 45 at Arizona Cardinals 51 (OT)
31.1% Week 10: New England Patriots 34 at Indianapolis Colts 35
12.8% NFC Championship: Minnesota Vikings 28 at New Orleans Saints 31 (OT)
6.2% Week 15: Green Bay Packers 36 at Pittsburgh Steelers 37
4.8% Week 11: Cleveland Browns 37 at Detroit Lions 38
3.2% Week 2: Indianapolis Colts 27 at Miami Dolphins 23
Five other games were at 1.5% or below.

Do you notice something about our top game? Yes, that's the one where the team featuring the official Defensive Player of the Year gave up51 friggin' points. (No, I'm not blaming Charles Woodson for that, but he wasn't exactly shutting anyone down that day, was he?) I'm surprised that "fourth-and-2" finished second. I would have thought most of you were sick and tired of Colts-Patriots games by now.

The "Get Your Story Straight" Award for best commercial during NFL games this year was (Last year's choice: Mastercard "Peyton Manning on the Road")

30.3% Head and Shoulders Troy Polamalu
27.6% Snickers "Hungry German Guy"
14.9% Old Spice "Different Smelling Man"
14.2% Nike Adrian Peterson
13.0% Dr. Pepper Gene Simmons/Dr. Dre

Apparently, Troy Polamalu's hair is so mesmerizing that the people at MasterCard's ad agency forgot to write funny Peyton Manning commericals this year.

The "John Mellencamp Must Die" Award for most annoying commercial during NFL games this year was (Last year's choice: Toyota "Saved by Zero"):

28.1% Bud Light "Jimmy Football" (a.k.a. "Tailgate Tested, Tailgate Approved")
20.0% "I'm Steve and Windows 7 was my idea."
15.7% Toyota "Saved by Zero"
13.8% eTrade "Talking Baby"
11.4% Best Buy "Christmas Carolers"
5.2% Pepsi Super Bowl commercial comparing Will.I.Am to Bob Dylan
5.1% Pizza Hut "Jackpot!"
0.6% Pepsi Throwback

Whoops. I think I left Toyota's "Saved by Zero" ad on the list by accident, although it was so amazingly annoying that it probably does deserve votes in two separate years. I would really like to take one of those Toyotas and run over Jimmy Football with it. Oh, and Will.I.Am sucks, but I would have to buy a Pepsi or two if they could somehow put together a commercial where Bob Dylan covered "My Humps."

The funniest thing to happen during the 2009 NFL season was: (Last year's winner: Dan Orlovsky absent-mindedly rolls out the back of the end zone for a safety.)

32.8% The ultimate Al Davis moment: drafting Darrius Heyward-Bey over Michael Crabtree.
18.4% "Goddamit, Donald!"
13.7% Seahawks try out new long snappers on the sidelines during the game.
11.2% Mark Sanchezcriticizes Pete Carroll for leaving USC.
10.3% LaDainian Tomlinson's "Electric Glide" video
5.2% DJ Steve Porter's"You Play to Win the Game" Remix
4.8% Brett Favre's rendition of "Pants on the Ground"
3.7% Randy Moss fools around with fan in Randy Moss mask.

Hey, you know that YouTube montage of bad New York Jets draft picks? We're pretty close to getting one of those for the Raiders, right?

That does it for the 2009 Football Outsiders Awards. Once again, thanks to all the readers for participating.


186 comments, Last at 21 Mar 2010, 6:47pm

1 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Troy Polamalu's hair won??? If it wasn't for Jimmy Football, that would have been a good choice for Most Annoying!

176 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Dear FO,you had me at DPoY...but what the hell were you thinking with this one. Troy's commercials are of the ilk as stalking, domestic abuse and anything related to the hair on the back of your neck standing straight!

3 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Good stuff. I wish I actually voted. As a guy who charted every Giants game, I think Sheridan's award was well deserved. Same goes for CC Brown. Good god is CC Brown is bad (but solid on special teams). A little bummed Hakeem Nicks didn't get any recognition in the rookie category. Overall can't really argue with much here.

4 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

As for funny moment, where there any votes for that absurd fake field goal by the Redskins against the Giants?

5 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

I'm surprised by Lance Briggs being on the overrated list. He's great at everything that isn't getting to the quarterback.

I can understand why people are excited for Aromashodu. He plays receiver more like Cutler likes, with a big body and jumping for the ball. Instead of relying on speed to get open. I would say he's more likely to break out than Limas Sweed.

Almost all the underrated offensive players are from the AFC, don't know if that means anything, but it's kind of interesting.

10 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Aromashodu also has a really good rapport with Cutler (Doug Farrar wrote about it on this very site), and Cutler was lobbying for him to play all year. If you think that Cutler and the Bears' offense will be improved next year (which Aaron implies is a reasonable prediction), then it makes sense you would also think Aromashodu would break out, as there's a good chance he's the Bears' most-targeted receiver next year.

15 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Preliminary-style rough research has shown that preseason rushing numbers are much more valuable as a future indicator than preseason receiving numbers. So yeah, not a big deal.

Oh, and for the comment above, I forgot the swinging gate in the "funniest" category. My fault there.

54 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Exactly. Cutler wanted Aromashodu to play all year. Their rapport started during training camp, and you could see their chemistry during the preseason. Yes, it was only the preseason, but it was obvious that Aromashodu brought an element to the Bears that they really haven't had in years. The last Bears receiver who could make the kind of plays that Aromashodu was making was Marcus Robinson.

Unfortunately, Aromashodu got dinged up toward the end of the preseason and was out for a while. Along with many others, I think the Bears held him out far too long. I think he could have returned to the field a lot earlier, at which point he might have made a difference in some of the close games the Bears lost because of repeated red zone failures. But, as usual, the Bears' coaching staff took too long to make needed changes that were obvious to the fans and the media. (Another example was sticking too long with Orlando Pace.) Once "the other Devin" got on the field, he showed why Cutler had been lobbying for him all year.

That's why I and many others think that Aromashodu will break out next year. If he hadn't missed so much time at the beginning of the year, he probably would have broken out this year.

52 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Total agreement about Briggs. The guy was playing on his own at times last year.

I am not sure how much value there is in the over-rated voting, I would guess that too many people simply use it as an opportunity to be snide about a team or player they don't much like. It isn't very objective.

7 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

"As for the New Orleans Saints, how often do you have a team -- let alone a Super Bowl champion -- where the two best offensive linemen are the guards?"

I wonder if this is by design, at least a little bit.

1. Brees is a short quarterback.
2. Brees is very good at feeling the rush.
3. Brees has a very quick release.

Therefore, he's a bit more capable of handling outside pass rush that most quarterbacks, while at the same time, less capable of dealing with pass rushers being directly in front of him. It makes sense that you would want to invest more in guard play when you have a short-yet-very-poised quarterback.

17 Saints guards

But remember, the right tackle Stinchcomb made the ProBowl this year (although probably more because of playing for the Saints than great O-line play), and the real starting LT, Jamaal Brown, has been to 2 PB's. It's not like they have the corpse of Orlando Pace out there at tackle.
BTW--they got both of those guards, IIRC, in the 4th round. Interesting story about Evans--the father of one of the Saints' scouts was his OC at Bloomberg. The other G, Carl Nicks, is from Nebraska--IIRC, he carried a 2nd round grade, but dropped because of character problems. The Saints took a chance on him--and now they have a very good O-line that will still be playing together for several years. The only old guy is the backup guard Nesbit--the second oldest is RT Stinchcomb--and his "replacement" is already on the roster--either Strief or Bushrod.
You know you have a strong offense when your "needs" are backup young guard, 3rd string RB (maybe), and 5th receiver (again, maybe). That's why G. Williams won his well-deserved asst. coach of the year award--his defense did enough to win the SB!

12 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards


Where is it? It's entirely unsurprising that a Pats fan would be unduely defensive and have a persecution complex. But where is the Patriots hate? It's intriguing that you can actually feel slighted in any category. Which ones?

11 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

I'm guessing about 89.7% of the voters have not seen that LaDainian Tomlinson video... Oh, man.

78 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

The best thing about it, to me, was that it led me to the Tim and Eric duh duh ba video which is hilarious. To me, "You play to win the game" is the clear winner. So Peyton shouted at Brown. I bet it happens all the time.

34 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

I didn't. But I can't say I typically get excited about the latest offerings from youtube. Most of the pop-culture ideas are things of which I'm blissfully ignorant, so I voted for the Seattle special teams. To me, that's funny.

16 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

By the way, what would Ray Rice have to do to break out more than he already has broken out? Fly?

My thoughts exactly. Although not as bad as the national media member (Clark Judge, possibly) who put Adrian Peterson on his preseason "Breakout Candidate" list. That's right, the guy who was drafted #1 in 95% of fantasy football leagues was a breakout candidate.

Can't someone give this guy an endorsement deal or something to raise his level of fame?

My vote goes to the San Diego County Sheriff's Department.

Oh, and there's an error in the underrated defense category, labelled as offense instead.

104 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Well, I voted for Delhomme, not because he was worse that Russell, but because his team was a lot better. If the Panthers had just started Matt Moore right away (or Delhomme not been so god-awful) they'd probably have made the playoffs, whereas starting Bruce Gradkowski wouldn't have made THAT BIG of a difference. So Delhomme was more un-valuable to his team, if that makes any sense.

21 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

I'm not ashamed to admit that I would have voted for Jimmy Football for best commercial if I could have. I frequently have trouble putting on a condiment, and I thought those commercials were funny. Certainly better than Polamalu's shampoo commercials.

22 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

I was disappointed in the "funny" category. The Raiders drafting Heyward-Bey was a ridiculously stupid moment. It was an absurd moment. It was amusing at the time.

But "funny"? Not in the way of Orlovsky running out the back of the end zone, or the Redskins running the exact same play right after a timeout despite the other team being 100% prepared for it. Or even the Sanchez criticism of Carroll.

But then again, none of them can top last year's, so I guess no matter what it was going to be a slight disappointment.

96 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

It may be because of the bad plays where DHB was involved. Like the ball bouncing off his chest for a pick six. Falling down just short of the end zone as the time is running off the clock. Just generally dropping passes. And it doesn't help that he had the NFL's most inaccurate QB trying to get him the ball much of the season.

38 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

He did a good job this year, but it's the same phenomenon as the previously mentioned "Rivers for MVP" thread. In order for Phillips to get a vote, someone has to think he was THE BEST coach in the league this year. There is no 2nd place vote. If it was "rank your top 10 and we'll assign weights to it", then he might have made it into the top 10, maybe. But I can't imagine anyone making a case that Wade Phillips was THE BEST coach in the NFL this year.

41 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

But I can't imagine anyone who would say that about Mike Singletary or Ken Whisenhunt either. And even Caldwell I would argue has no credentials to be CotY. He was part of the "Destruction of Perfection" (even though the Saints won the SB). What did he really accomplish? Exactly what the Colts have accomplished every other year minus 2006.

If 8 coaches get votes, Phillips deserves to be one of those 8 is my main point. I didn't vote for him myself, but I would've surely voted for him over Ken, Mike, and Jim.

55 Re: 2009 Football Outsiders Awards

Caldwell's team had the best record in the league and made the Super Bowl, so I'm not sure how that's "exactly what the Colts have accomplished every other year minus 2006". I'd say it's more than they have accomplished every year EXCEPT 2006.

As for Singletary or Whisenhunt, yeah, I wouldn't have voted for them either. In Singletary's case, I suppose a case could be made that he took a 4-12 quality team and got an 8-8 record out of them. That does sound like a very good job of coaching. That would be the knock on Phillips -- he took a talented team just about exactly where they should have gone. I would say the same about Whisenhunt. I can only think that the Whisenhunt votes had some residual carryover from last year.

"I didn't vote for him myself, but I would've surely voted for him over Ken, Mike, and Jim."

That's kind of the point. I assume you didn't vote for him because you didn't think he was the coach of the year. So... if you weren't willing to vote for him, why should I, or anyone else?