Ndamukong Suh was named the 2010 Pepsi NFL Rookie of the year yesterday afternoon in the NFL Media Center in Dallas Texas. The announcement came in front of family, friends, NFL League office officials, Pepsi representatives and 100 plus media types. It is an award voted on by the fans.
The Rookie of the Year award started in 2002, and the 2004 winner is starting in his third Super Bowl Ben Roethlisberger quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Others that have won this award are Adrian Peterson, Joe Flacco, Carnell Williams and Jeremy Shocky. 2010 candidates nominated for this year’s honors were Sam Bradford (who was not present because of a death in the family), Mike Haden (Cleveland), Mike Williams (Tampa Bay) and Devin McCourty (New England), who was not in attendance.
Suh was the second pick in the 2010 NFL draft behind Bradford. While Bradford received a rookie record signing bonus of $50M, Suh was close with $40M. While both careers will always be compared for Rams fans, the 2011 Pro Bowl selection and now the Rookie of the Year honor gives Suh a big head start.
While Bradford was the face of the franchise and was the difference maker on a talent depleted young football team (despite Pro Bowl running back Steven Jackson), Suh was a dominant player from pre-season throughout the regular season. His stats speak for themselves; 66 tackles (49/solo, 49 asst), 10 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 interception, 3 pass defended and a fumble returned for a touchdown.
While all of the candidates deserved the award, the man named House of Spears won. Suh accepted the award he thanked his family, God, Coaches and teammates, credited Kyle Vanden Bosch for teaching him how to be a pro. He also paid respect to Bradford and his family with condolences in the passing of a family member.
This man is a total class act, an exceptional football player. He has the skill set, athletic ability to arguable is the best interior defensive linemen in the game in the next few years, a BLUE player that is off to an exceptional career.