Buffalo Bills Miami Dolphins New England Patriots New York jets Baltimore Ravens Cincinnati Bengals Cleveland Browns Pittsburgh Steelers Houston Texans Indianapolis Colts Jacksonville Jaguars Tennessee Titans Denver Broncos Kansas City Cheifs Oakland Raiders San Diego Chargers Dallas Cowboys New York Giants Philadelphia Eagles Washington Redskins Chicago Bears Detroit Lions Green Bay Packers Minnesota Vikings Atlanta Falcons Carolina Panthers New Orleans Saints Tampa Bay Buccaneers Arizona Cardinals St. Louis Rams San Francisco 49ers Seattle Seahawks

Green Zone League Articles

Nic's picks: Award Season (part 2, MVP)
By Nic St. Marie
Special to gzl-football.com

Addition of the Year
NFC: WR Terrance Williams - 71 Rec, 1126 yards, 15.86 Avg, 12 TDs, 14 drops
One season ago, the Niners won 2 games. In fact, in the last three seasons the 49ers had won a total of 11 game. This year? 12.

Not all of that is on Terrance Williams, and yet you look around and there isn't much else to point to. Rookie HB, not highly drafted, played well. Lots of high draft picks in recent years, yet no marked improvement in wins. A big jump this year, despite Geno Smith throwing no more consistent than years past. Williams matched up with Josh Gordon to make this team far more explosive, and his effects were felt.

AFC: QB Josh Freeman: 308/553, 55.7%, 3978, 7.19 YPA, 27 TDs, 16 INT
Unlike Glennon, Freeman is my choice for improving his team's play. Leading the Bengals into the playoffs for the first time since 2012, Freeman then led the Bengals into history as the AFC champs, and scoring enough points to win the SB if the Bengals defense had held on. Alas, SB runner up is all he could do in his first season wearing stripes. What will year two look like?

Comeback Player of the Year
NFC: CB Claudio Ambellina - 68 TAK, 3 TFL, 1 FF, 1 FR (4 yards), 6 INTs (40 yards), 34 Pass Def, 1 TD
In 2017 Ambellina had arrived, the only 6'5" CB in the league, and a threat to INT or knock down more passes than anyone else in the league. But in 2018, he and the Buccs dropped off considerably, and while he still deflected passes it wasn't quite enough to be dominant and he only gathered two INTs. Perhaps his coronation was a bit premature?

Fast forward to this year and he returns to the top of the heap. Two more strong seasons and he'll be in the top ten in both INTs and DEF, something that for him will be more impressive because his physical decline will not be as graceful (in years) as the speed-demons that normally top these charts.

AFC: WR Robert Woods - 88 Rec, 1467 yards, 16.7 YPC, 7 TDs, 5 drops

One year after having 13 drops and averaging under 12 yards per catch, this deep threat come back with his best season ever in terms of reception, yards per reception, and drops. He's scored more TDs, but this is his most in 4 years, and more than the past two years combined.

Offensive Player of the Year
NFC: QB Mike Glennon - 291/479, 60.8%, 4167 TDS, 8.7 YPA, 33 TDs, 12 INTs, 101.5 rating, 2 Fum Lost
Mike Glennon, the first Packers QB in a long time to play well, is the NFC's offensive player of the year. Weird, because he played for the 9-7 Packers in a down year, and the Packers still tried to run it down people's throat. But Glennon was clearly the best QB in the league, and in the NFC is my pick as the offensive player of the year.

Yeah, I said it, the Packers added the 27 year old former first round pick and he responded by being the best QB in the league. Imagine how many games they would have won if he could beat the Lions...cough...11-5.

AFC: WR C.J.Washington - 95 Rec, 1720 yards, 18.3 Avg, 10 TDs, 9 drops
Wow, From a guy who has already been impressive in both volume and YAC, he exploded in his fourth year. These weren't league-record numbers, but for this year they far outpaced the rest of the field and whether you love total numbers or efficiency, they were beautiful.

Defensive Player of the Year
NFC: CB Claudio Ambellina - 68 TAK, 3 TFL, 1 FF, 1 FR (4 yards), 6 INTs (40 yards), 34 Pass Def, 1 TD
Ambellina had himself a great season, as discussed above. I considered Don'a Hightower (111 TKL, 13 TFL, 2 FF, 6 INTs), but the Ambellina deflections outweigh Hightower's non-INT contributions in my mind. Clowney led the league in sacks for his second time (in three seasons), but even with a FR for a TD doesn't quite catch up to a dominant CB having a great year. It's close, and just my opinion.

AFC: MLB Melvin Ingram - 139 TKL, 10 TFL, 7 sacks, 5 FF, 1 INT (23 yards), 12 Pass Def, 1 TD
Remember I said tackles aren't sexy? They are if they're accompanied by 7 sacks, 10 tackles for loss, 5 forced fumbles, 12 deflections and a teeder. In the AFC competition isn't really there for him. Eric Victorino set the record for passes deflected for the Ravens, Shawn Oakman had 13 sacks, Dre Kirkpatrick had the most impressive DB year with 7 INTs and 37 deflections, good for 1 TD. But Ingram's numbers make him special this time, and none of those other guys knock him off of this spot for me.

Most Valuable Player
NFC: QB Mike Glennon - 291/479, 60.8%, 4167 TDS, 8.7 YPA, 33 TDs, 12 INTs, 101.5 rating, 2 Fum Lost
This is a tough place to choose a player. I've spent two articles looking at the best individual numbers. I spent another bit of time looking at the contributions for the teams that won a lot. Too many of those were interdependent, QB/WR/RB or QB/WR/WR groups where one guy didn't carry the team. Which brings us to the Packers.

History says the Packers usually bring one of the top defenses, but outside of having the third-most sacks this year slacked in the defensive department. 25th in PPG allowed, 31st in opposing TDs allowed (33), 23rd in QB rating allowed...at least they were in the top ten in run defense. So to win more than half of their games, they'd have to bring an above-average offense this time around.

On the offensive side of the ball, the Packers love to feed Doug Martin. Two more carries and he would have matched his 2014 season, which is currently tied for 4th most attempts every in a season. Yet this year that didn't pay off so directly, with a 3.9 YPC average over his 392 attempts, 7 TDs and 8 fumbles.

So how did they win 9 games, despite their pass defense and their sputtering ground game?

Mike Glennon and his merry band of WRs. Well, WRs and a 1000 yard TE, which doesn't happen often. Glennon leads the league in efficiency with by far the best Rating, the second best YPA (Stafford, 8.84 YPA), the most TDs, and the third most yards. The league leaders each had more than 65 extra attempts on him, and the three behind him also have more attempts than Glennon.

Onely one of those five players has less INTs than his 12, and no other QB with 100 attempts or more has a 60% completion rate. Glennon's play is the biggest reason the Packers made the playoffs, and the arrow is only pointing up with his young WR/TE duo only getting better.
Discuss this Article in our Forums Replies - 0 :: Views - 38

Green Zone League Articles

Powered by League Pulse.  League Pulse was written by Brad Mallett (btmlltt).