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Drew Brees

OPINION: Our NFL Awards Favorites

At the start of Week 17, the favorites for the NFL yearly awards seem to be all but decided. Here’s how they stack up.

Chicago Bears coach Matt Nagy seems to be the favorite for Coach of the Year. In his first season, he’s taken Mitchell Trubisky and the Bears to their first playoff game since 2010. They also won the NFC North for the fourth time in history. While the offense hasn’t broken records, with a brick wall defense they fill the typical Bears archetype.

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is the likely Comeback Player of the Year. It took him until Memorial Day to regain the ability to throw a regulation size ball. Now, he’s taken Indy to a playoff spot assuming he can beat the Titans in Week 17. Luck is 10-0 against them in his career. This season, Luck has the best passer rating of his career took the team on an 8-1 stretch.

Los Angeles Chargers safety Derwin James is a strong pick for Defensive Rookie of the Year. He’s led all safeties with most disrupted dropbacks, got 3.5 sacks, and pulled in 3 interceptions. The man does everything. James brings intense skill and size to lighting quick speed. At 215 pounds, he ran a 4.47 40-yard dash.

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley should end up as Offensive Rookie of the Year. He’s made an awful Giants team watchable. He’s fifth in the league with 73 first downs. He’s gained over 2000 yards from scrimmage and there are the seven gains of 50+ yards. Each game it seems like he’s breaking off some uncomprehensible run. The Penn State product is a walking highlight reel. Efficiency stats don’t hold him in the same light. Critics might say he gains most of his yards in garbage time but on the team he’s on most time is garbage time.

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees will be the MVP.  Brees posted a record 74.4% completion rate. There are the 3,992 yards and the 32 touchdowns. And most importantly, there’s the no. 1 seed for the NFC.  There might be better stat lines but no one has put their team in a better position to win than Brees.

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Written by Bill Piersa