Troy Polamalu Edges Clay Matthews In Defensive Player Of The Year Voting

Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety, Troy Polamalu, received 17 of 50 votes for the AP NFL Defensive Player Of The Year Award, the next closest defender, Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews, received 15. That’s quite a narrow margin, and yet it’s a fitting one.

In a season marred by adversity, the Steelers rose above and beyond what most expected them to do, finding themselves point to make yet another mark in the annals of the NFL history books, one man rose above the rest, both on and off of the field.

Polamalu defined a season, and a team built on hard nosed, knock you out football when he dove over the Baltimore line, sacking quarterback Joe Flacco and forcing a fumble that led to a Steelers touchdown. That play is the one that will stick out in the minds of fans and foes alike when they think back on the 2010 season of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

That play is the one that was a single turning point in a season that could have gone either way.

Polamalu intercepted seven passes in 2010, even though he missed two games (Steelers were 1-1 in those games).

He marks the sixth Pittsburgh defender to win the award, following big players and big names – most recently outside linebacker James Harrison.

Teammates, former teammates and coaches alike have nothing but praise for the way that Polamalu plays the game, Harrison was quoted as saying that he “brings this defense from a C defense to an A defense”, while former Pittsburgh receiver and Super Bowl XLIII Most Valuable Player, Santonio Holmes is on record as saying that Polamalu is the best player he’s ever played against.

Cushing and Polamalu get to take another step in a rivalry that has only just begun when they battle for the title in less than a week, both have knacks for making big plays when they need to happen, and both are hoping to bring the Lombardi Trophy home with them.

Chicago Bears defensive end Julius Peppers, linebacker Brian Urlacher and Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata also received votes.

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~ by Steel Hurtin on January 31, 2011.

4 Responses to “Troy Polamalu Edges Clay Matthews In Defensive Player Of The Year Voting”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Vincent Calo, Steel Hurtin'. Steel Hurtin' said: Troy Polamalu Edges Clay Matthews In Defensive Player Of The Year Voting: http://t.co/gl30fDM #Steelers #Packers #NFL […]

  2. I’ms orry but I don’t think though that Troy Polamalu deserved the defensive player of the year. I’m not saying that Troy Polamalu doesn’t mean a lot to his team, as he means possibly as much as any player in the NFL. However, on a one year type of thing, Clay Matthews probably should have gotten the award, especially since Troy Polamalu missed a couple of games due to injury. One or two memorable/outstanding plays during a season that stick in people’s memories should not blind you to facts around. Just because someone is incredibly important to their team does not necessarily mean that they had the better single season of greatness comparatively. Also, you think you could take a look at my blog cuz I would love ot hear what you have to say. http://chrisross91.wordpress.com/2011/02/02/why-is-reputation-so-important/

  3. I know where you’re coming from, but look at it this way: the voters really had no clear cut guy who was miles ahead of everyone this year. Matthews had a hot start, fell off mid-season, and started coming on at the end. Peppers’ most memorable play was really a team performance in stopping Vick, Reed missed more games than Polamalu, etc. He got it off of reputation partially, sure. No argument there, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t deserve it. He made game winning plays on the defensive side of the ball, none of the others really have those memory sticking plays.

  4. […] rusher, earning Pro Bowl honors in both of his first two seasons, and being the runner up for the Defensive Player Of The Year Award this year. Whereas James Harrison had a better statistical season than him in every category except […]

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