The NFL's Top Five Candidates For the Comeback Player of the Year Award
Every year the Associated Press votes for the NFL's Comeback Player of the Year. This season there seems to be so many choices for the coveted award.
Chad Pennington is a two-time winner of the Comeback Player of the Year Award, and don't be suprised if Pennington puts another one of those on his trophy shelf after next season.
But lets get back to this season. The award is given to a player coming back from an injury, or just not a very good year. One obvious contender is Patriots QB, Tom Brady who will probably be the eventual winner of the award. But there are many other contenders for the award.
QB-Alex Smith 49ers
Alex Smith may not be considered for the award along with another player in the article due to the fact that they have only played in a couple of games. Smith has brought a bright spot to the 49ers offense along with Frank Gore and Vernon Davis.
Smith has been a member of the 49ers since 2005 when he was taken with the first overall pick in the NFL Draft. In Smith's young NFL career he has never really had a season in such that he has played great. In Smith's entire five year career he has only played in 33 games missing all of last season and playing all 16 games in only one season.
Though Smith's stats have not been something to brag about he has brought the 49ers to alot of wins as QB. Smith's stats this season include going 79 for 122 on completed passes with 808 passing yards, six touchdowns, and six interceptions.
WR-Nate Burleson Seahawks
Nate Burleson has had a great year coming off playing in only one game last season. Matt Hasselback is making Burleson look like one of the Top-Twenty wide recievers in the NFL.
Burleson was originally selected by the Vikings with a third-round pick in the 2003 NFL Draft. In his second year in the NFL Burleson scored an amazing nine touchdowns and had his only career season with over 1,000 yards.
This season Burleson has caught 45 receptions for 562 yards with three touchdowns compared to only playing in one game last year.
RB-Cedric Benson Bengals
Even though Benson is currently injured and has to have Larry Johnson start in his place, Benson has to be a contender for the NFL's Comeback Player of the Year Award.
Benson was originally drafted with the fourth overall pick in the 2005 NFL draft by the Bears. After three seasons of being mostly on the bench with the Bears, Benson signed with the Bengals in 2008.
Last season, Benson played sub-par as a starter for about half the season for the Bengals. But this season as a Bengal, Benson has showed the NFL world what he has and what his potential is. This season, Benson already has more rushing yards with 859 then he has ever had in a season before, and has tied his career high in touchdowns.
QB-Vince Young Titans
Vince Young, along with Alex Smith as I mentioned before, may not be considered for the award due to the fact that they have only played in a couple of games, but in my opinion the two have to be considered.
Young became the starting QB after a terrible start to the season by then Titans starting QB, Kerry Collins. Since Young has been named starter the Titans are undefeated.
Young was originally drafted with the third overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft. In Young's rookie year he was selected to go to the Pro Bowl. Young was also the starter in 2007. In 2008, Kerry Collins was named the Titans starting QB and the Titans franchise thought something was going wrong with Vince Young.
Young has proved his doubters wrong this season throwing 44 for 67 passes complete, with 507 passing yards, 78 rushing yards, three total touchdowns, and two interceptions.
QB-Tom Brady Patriots
Tom Brady will be the eventual winner of this award just because he has had a wonderfull season after missing almost every game last season after being tackled by then Cheifs' safety, Bernard Pollard.
Brady may be the biggest steal ever in the NFL's Draft history being taken in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft. In his rookie year, Brady played behind starter Drew Bledsoe and two other back-ups.
Since becoming the Patriots starting QB in 2001 Brady has been named to four Pro Bowls, is a one-time MVP, and has brought New England three Super Bowl rings.
This season, Brady has gone 233 on 352 completed passes and has thrown 19 touchdowns along with only six interceptions.