My award nominations for the 2010 season
As we reach that time of the year when everyone in the Bucs UK and on BUCPOWER.COM gets to vote in the nine different award categories, time also therefore for my annual article in which I make my own nominations and the reasons behind them.
OFFENSE - with honourable mentions to LeGarrette Blount, Mike Williams and Kellen Winslow, there is one man who makes it all happen and that is Josh Freeman. The Buccaneers have never had a quarterback this good and he is still only in his second year with just over 20 starts to his resume. The composure, mobility and total leadership Josh has shown this year has been staggering and the sky is the limit for this guy in the years ahead.
DEFENSE - this has not been a stellar year for the Buccaneer defense compared to the glory Monte Kiffin and Tony Dungy years but they still did enough of a job to earn a Top-20 NFL ranking. But for individuals, you have to look to the corner position and Aqib Talib. He has become the shutdown corner that the team needed and his absence through injury was noticed the final month of the season.
SPECIAL TEAMS - Connor Barth is the reliable kicker that every good team needs and Robert Malone solidified the punting role after the "Blunder from Down Under" Chris Bryan was released. But this one has to go to Micheal Spurlock - another kick return touchdown, an 80-yarder against Seattle. Remember when we always dreamed of a kick return score? And here comes Barrett Ruud ..... was supposed to be in the Defensive category but he over-pursued this one as well.
ROOKIE - wow, where do you start? In previous years, someone making a dozen tackles on special teams got a win in this category. In 2010, you can make a case for LeGarrette Blount, Ted Larsen, Gerald McCoy, Cody Grimm or Arrelious Benn. But with double figures in touchdown receptions, Mike Williams, take a bow. You deserve it.
NFL PLAYER OF THE YEAR - This is a little hard for me as I don't watch a lot of other football outside of the Bucs. So hence my vote goes to No.5. Based on stats and general impression, it is hard to look past Tom Brady and King Fido for the respective conferences though.
ALlAN LEES MEMORIAL AWARD FOR THE WRITER OF THE YEAR - I am blessed to be editing so many great writers on this site. In order of weekly appearance, Alex Howells, Nick Houllis, Chris Bruno and Steve Careford with Denis Crawford out of the bullpen. How could I possibly cast a vote for any one? So I will pass and give an honourable mention to Tony Kornheiser for his superb work on PTI which makes me laugh every morning when I listen to the podcast of each show.
FAVOURITE BUCCANEER - Again I am blessed here to have met so many of the players to know them more than just their on-field actions. But in spite of what Josh Freeman has done, how can you not root for Cadillac Williams? What he did coming back from the two knee injuries, how he helps out the passing game with his receiving and blitz pickups, and how he plays the team role all the time.
BOB TIMONEY MEMORIAL AWARD FOR THE BUCCANEER OF THE YEAR - Lots of possible candidates here led by Cadillac and Josh on the field, Mark Dominik and Raheem Morris off the field, and Brian Ford and Christy Schnell in the Bucs' front office. But cast your mind back to early 2010 and the Winter Olympics - Dan Money, the first Bucs UK member to represent his country. And in a sport like the bobsleigh too. Anyone who read his posts on the BUCPOWER message board became a fan on the spot and his interview on 1010 Sports was excellent. Well done Dan, a real Buccaneer!
THE NICK HALLING AWARD FOR DICKHEAD OF THE YEAR - So many candidates here of course with TO, Brett, Tanard and Albert all having really good chances. But this one has to go to ***** ******* (name withheld for legal reasons) who proved to everyone on the message board that he was by far the biggest **** ever to post there. From wildly inaccurate predictions to non-stop slagging off of the team, players and front office, this ***** is getting a ton of votes from people who had to put up with his postings until he was barred. A real ******* of the highest order.