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AP Rookies of the year

Postby The Balanced Man » Wed Jan 03, 2007 12:24 pm

Young outruns the field, is top offensive rookie
Associated Press


NEW YORK -- Vince Young looks as if he'll make the NFL his personal playground, too.


Vince Young ran away with the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year award.
The dynamic quarterback for the Tennessee Titans won The Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year Award on Wednesday. He did it in the same fashion he turned around the Titans' season -- running away from the rest of the field.



Young, who led Texas to the 2005 national championship and was the third overall pick in last April's draft, overwhelmed one of the strongest rookie classes in NFL history. He received 23 votes from a nationwide panel of 50 sports writers and broadcasters who cover the league.



That easily beat New Orleans wide receiver Marques Colston and Jacksonville running back Maurice Jones-Drew, who had nine apiece; San Diego tackle Marcus McNeill (6); and Saints running back Reggie Bush (3).



Running back Carnell "Cadillac" Williams of Tampa Bay won the award last year. Young is the third member of the Tennessee-Houston franchise to take top rookie honors: Earl Campbell in 1978 and Eddie George in 1996 did it for the Houston Oilers.



Young was the catalyst in Tennessee's rally from 0-5 to 8-8, at times looking as unstoppable for the Titans as he did with the Longhorns. A starter from Week 4, Young sprinkled all kinds of spectacular big plays with a growing maturity in joining Ben Roethlisberger (2004) as the only quarterbacks to win top rookie honors in the 49-year history of the award.




He became the first rookie quarterback to rush for more than 500 yards in the Super Bowl era, and his passing skills improved all year under coach Jeff Fisher and offensive coordinator Norm Chow.



"I like to go out there and play the game and show that I can deliver the ball down the field, and that I can use my legs at the right time, when its time to use my legs, and checking the ball down, just being a quarterback," Young said. "I want to change the game a little bit."



He's already helped change the perception of what a first-year quarterback can do given playing time. Young sat and learned for barely a month while Kerry Collins started and the Titans struggled. Then Fisher turned to the youngster well before he'd planned.



And Young delivered as the Titans threatened to become the first team to lose its opening five games and then make the playoffs. They were in contention until the final weekend, thanks greatly to a six-game winning streak that included a remarkable comeback from 21-0 down in the final 10 minutes to beat the Giants.



"He was very prepared when he got here because of the experience he had in college," said Fisher, who along with Tennessee's scouts and general manager Floyd Reese chose Young over Matt Leinart and Jay Cutler in the draft. "We knew that he had a chance to improve and obviously that's why we went ahead and started him when we did. We felt like he was ready."



Chow, who worked with Heisman Trophy winners Leinart and Carson Palmer at Southern California, is considered one of the finest teachers of quarterbacks in the business. What does he like most about Young, who left Texas after his junior season?



"Besides the physical skills, it's the will and the strength inside, the 'it' factor that a quarterback either has or doesn't have," Chow said. "Obviously, he has it. The quickness in which he won the team over and the quickness in which he became the leader, the guy everybody looked up to, that was special.



"Vince Young has this great ability to lift others around him. To see him do it so quickly, that wasn't a surprise, but it was certainly good to see."



Perhaps Young's finest moment was a 39-yard TD run in overtime to beat Houston, his hometown team that bypassed the Lone Star State hero to take defensive end Mario Williams atop the draft. There seemed to be as many Titans No. 10 jerseys in Reliant Stadium as any Texans shirts.



"It was a great ending," Young said. "Being from Houston and being in front of my family and the fans that respect me as a player and a person, as well, it can't get any better than that."

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press




Offensive Rookie of Year voting
Vince Young Tennessee 23
Marques Colston New Orleans 9
Maurice Jones-Drew Jacksonville 9
Marcus McNeil San Diego 6
Reggie Bush New Orleans 3
Last edited by The Balanced Man on Wed Jan 03, 2007 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby beanoX3 » Wed Jan 03, 2007 12:30 pm

May as well put this here too, for AP DROY.
Houston LB Ryans wins AP Defensive Rookie of Year
By BARRY WILNER, AP Football Writer
January 3, 2007

NEW YORK (AP) -- DeMeco Ryans came into the NFL as Houston's second choice to bolster its defense. He leaves his first pro year as The Associated Press Defensive Rookie of the Year.

The linebacker, chosen at the top of the second round of last April's draft -- 32 spots after the Texans made defensive end Mario Williams the first overall selection -- was a runaway winner of the award announced Wednesday. Ryans led the league in solo tackles with 126, and his 156 total tackles were 33 more than the next-best rookie, Detroit linebacker Ernie Sims.

In fact, no rookie in the last 20 years had more tackles than Ryans, who was an All-American at Alabama in 2005. And Ryans had more tackles than any of the other five linebackers who won the award this decade, including Brian Urlacher and Shawne Merriman.

"It's always nice to be touted as one of the best and have a big-time stat, but I credit that to the other 10 guys that are around me on defense," Ryans said. "We wouldn't be talking about me without those other 10 guys out there."

Well, we might be, because Ryans came into training camp, was moved to the middle and almost immediately established himself as the premier rookie defender on the roster. Better -- by far -- than Williams.

And Ryans never let up.

"It wasn't a big `Wow' moment to me and there wasn't any nervousness or anything like that. I was comfortable from the time I began," he said. "Nothing really just shocked me going through the year. I played in a big game atmosphere in college, so I was used to that. I knew what the competition level would be like. Nothing really surprised me."

The ease with which Ryans won the award might have been surprising. He received 36 of the 50 votes by a nationwide panel of sports writers and broadcasters who cover the NFL.

Second was Chicago end Mark Anderson, who was Ryans' teammate at Alabama, with five votes. Green Bay linebacker A. J. Hawk was next with four, while Cleveland LB Kamerion Wimbley got two votes.

Williams, Cincinnati DB Johnathan Joseph and Baltimore DB Dawan Landry each received one.

Gary Kubiak, in his first head coaching job, was concerned about moving Ryans to the leadership role in the middle of a revamped unit. He shouldn't have worried.

"I knew he was a special kid when he was here through OTAs and stuff," Kubiak said of offseason workouts. "Just how smart he was, and the coaches were coming back saying we hit it big on this kid, he's going to be something.

"I think when you really knew he was fixing to be a great player was about midway through training camp when we were in meetings and having a problem at (middle) linebacker and started having a conversation. We said: 'Let's just put the kid in there and go.' You say, `Well it's a lot to handle, it's the whole defense. We may set him back. We don't want to do that.'

"We made that decision and within about a two-week period you knew that he was going to be fine with it."

More than fine -- the best of all defensive rookies.

He is the first Texan to win an individual award since Houston entered the league in 2002.

Merriman won the award last year.

Voting (total 50 votes):
LB DeMeco Ryans (HOU) 36 votes
DE Mark Anderson (CHI) 5 votes
LB AJ Hawk (GB) 4 votes
LB Kamerion Wimbley (CLE) 2 votes
DB Johnathan Joseph (CIN) 1 vote
DB Dawan Landry (BAL) 1 vote
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Postby The Balanced Man » Wed Jan 03, 2007 12:33 pm

I am biased, however, I find it strange that Kamerion Wimbley got so few votes. He broke the rookie sack record after all. :-?
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Postby Karoz » Wed Jan 03, 2007 2:52 pm

The ORY when to a very deserving player, in my opinion.

Vince had a lot of touchdowns, some on the ground, some through the air. However, his performance can't be measured by stats alone. He did whatever it took to win, and he was very successful in doing so. I remember when he broke a 39 yard TD run against the Texans in overtime to win the game. Young is an absolutely amazing player who knows how to win, and it is good to know that he is being recognized for that quality.
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Postby Redskins Win » Wed Jan 03, 2007 3:01 pm

The Balanced Man wrote:I am biased, however, I find it strange that Kamerion Wimbley got so few votes. He broke the rookie sack record after all. :-?

I thought that as well.
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Postby Double Play Ball » Wed Jan 03, 2007 3:13 pm

The Balanced Man wrote:I am biased, however, I find it strange that Kamerion Wimbley got so few votes. He broke the rookie sack record after all. :-?


diddn't anderson have 12 to Wimbley's 11?

But anyway i agree with you here about WImbleys and recieving such few votes. He was the only pass ruher on Cleveland, while Anderson as part of the 2nd best D in the NFl. So O-Lines were much more aware for Wimbley whreabouts on the field than Anderson's
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Postby Crippler » Wed Jan 03, 2007 6:03 pm

Young had a low QB rating and his team still didnt make it into the playoffs, but he did do a lot to turn the team around after such a bad start. Most of his wins were only by a few points and most of the credit should go to the Tenn defense, but Young's record still speaks for itself.
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Postby disgruntledjetsfan » Wed Jan 03, 2007 6:28 pm

I'm shocked that Nick Mangold didn't get any votes for OROY. He started all 16 games at Center for the Jets, and for anyone who watched closely would have seen that he was absolutely dominant all year. Center is one of the hardest positions to play in football, and for a rookie to step in and fill the shoes of perenial all pro Kevin Mawae the way Mangold did is just remarkable....
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Postby sportsaddict » Wed Jan 03, 2007 6:39 pm

disgruntledjetsfan wrote:I'm shocked that Nick Mangold didn't get any votes for OROY. He started all 16 games at Center for the Jets, and for anyone who watched closely would have seen that he was absolutely dominant all year. Center is one of the hardest positions to play in football, and for a rookie to step in and fill the shoes of perenial all pro Kevin Mawae the way Mangold did is just remarkable....


Don't forget he also has a 350 pound little sister playing varsity guard for his old high school team.... :-b I saw a story on NFL Live about it and thought it was pretty cool- she squats like 600 pounds or something as well.

But yeah, I think the Jets are going to be very happy with their draft from 2006. Its remarkable how they picked up two top tier lineman in the first round alone in one year.
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Postby maddog60 » Wed Jan 03, 2007 8:04 pm

disgruntledjetsfan wrote:I'm shocked that Nick Mangold didn't get any votes for OROY. He started all 16 games at Center for the Jets, and for anyone who watched closely would have seen that he was absolutely dominant all year. Center is one of the hardest positions to play in football, and for a rookie to step in and fill the shoes of perenial all pro Kevin Mawae the way Mangold did is just remarkable....


McNeill was just as dominant at a much more highly regarded position, left tackle. I'm surprised any linemen got any votes. Mangold will get his due some day, he looks fantastic.
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