Bleacher Report's NFL Awards Week 7: Handing out Hardware
Sunday's games are in the books, and now it's time to reflect on what we've seen.
With several show-stopping rookies, an overseas game and a team's implosion all in one day, there were plenty of things to review for Week 7.
In addition to naming the winners of the Most and Least Valuable Player awards, this week includes the brand new "Ouch!" Award and recognition for the cheap shot of the week.
Here are the awards for Week 7.
Game of the Week: New York Jets vs. San Diego Chargers
A major choke from the San Diego Chargers and some improved play from New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez made for some of the best action of the day.
While the Chargers took a controlling 21-10 lead at halftime, the Jets responded in the second half with 17 unanswered points.
A good deal of credit has to go to the Jets defense, particularly cornerback Darrelle Revis, whose interception set up the go-ahead touchdown.
It was also a return to form for wide receiver Plaxico Burress, who caught three touchdown passes on the day. He was a major shot in the arm for the Jets offense.
Stinker Game of the Week: Cleveland Browns vs. Seattle Seahawks
The game between the Cleveland Browns and the Seattle Seahawks was very bad, and when you look at the numbers, it goes from ugly to revolting.
The Seahawks, who could have won this game in the final possession, ran 50 plays for a whopping 137 total yards to go along with their nine total first downs.
The Browns couldn't score a touchdown and saw two field goals blocked.
Clearly, the losers in this matchup were anybody who had to witness it.
"What Now?" Award: Indianapolis Colts
While I had originally intended this award to go to the winless Miami Dolphins, the awkward shambling of the individuals who somehow inhabited the uniforms of the Indianapolis Colts meant a complete rewrite was very much necessary.
The Colts' play Sunday was disastrous, and it's clear that this franchise might need to consider a complete retooling this offseason.
Many consider the injury to quarterback Peyton Manning as the reason for the team's current woes, but in reality, his exit has only made it obvious that the core of this team is in horrible shape.
One great quarterback cannot change years of poor drafting and ineffective player management. Several members of the team's leadership could see their way out by the year's end, including head coach Jim Caldwell.
As the city of Indianapolis celebrates hosting the Super Bowl, it will only serve to be a cruel reminder that this team may not be anywhere close to celebrating a championship of their own.
"Nice Catch Guy!"Award: Mike Wallace
While not the most mind-blowing catch, this reception from Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Mike Wallace was the result of good route-running and excellent speed.
Burning past the remaining two defenders, Wallace's touchdown would set the tone for the Steelers' big win over the Arizona Cardinals.
The 95-yard touchdown is now the longest reception in franchise history.
Milestone Moment Award: Tony Gonzalez
"Ouch!"Award: Matt Ryan
I have no idea how Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan was able to stay in the game after he turned his ankle against the Detroit Lions.
Despite the injury, Ryan was able to return and get the Falcons in for a final touchdown to seal the game.
In an interesting sidenote, several Falcons players ripped Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh for taunting Ryan as he was on the ground.
Big Play of the Week: Red Bryant
Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman Red Bryant was unstoppable on special teams,
In a game of field goals, Bryant stopped two of them, keeping his team in the game until their final drive.
Despite his strong play, his inability to control his temper would cost the Seahawks dearly. A head butt, for which he would receive an unnecessary roughness penalty, would give the Browns the final first down needed to burn the clock.
Ejected on the play, he might also see a fine from the league for his sloppy behavior.
Cheap Shot of the Week: Brian Robison
Dear Brian Robison,
It has come to our attention that you kicked Green Bay Packers T.J. Lang during Sunday's game.
Even though you apologized for your actions, please know kicking opposing players in the groin is not a nice thing to do. Please refrain from doing so in the future.
Not cool, man. Not cool.
Cool Story of the Day: Debut Domination
While in the past, I've done a Rookie of the Week slide, Sunday's action provided two excellent rookies whose debuts each deserved recognition: Dallas Cowboys running back Demarco Murray and Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder.
Murray destroyed the St. Louis Rams for 253 yards, setting the Cowboys' single-game record previously held by Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith.
Tebow, in his first start at quarterback this season, overcame a painfully slow start to score 15 fourth quarter points to lead the Broncos to an overtime victory.
Ponder, going against the toughest competition of the group, worked the Green Bay Packers for 219 yards and two touchdowns (he also threw two picks). For a team that hasn't been very competitive this season, Sunday was a great showing for the former Florida State Seminole.
Family Despair Award: The Glazer Family
The Glazer family, who own the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the English Premier League titans Manchester United FC, did not have the best of Sundays when it came to their teams.
In addition to their Buccaneers losing to the Chicago Bears 24-18, Manchester United were humiliated 6-1 in a cross-town battle with Manchester City.
All in all, not a great day for the family.
Avoiding a Rioting Mob Award: Matt Prater
Denver Broncos kicker Matt Prater almost blew the great comeback of quarterback Tim Tebow, missing two field goals in regulation versus the Miami Dolphins.
Fortunately for Prater, he was able to connect when it counted, blasting a 52-yard kick in overtime for the Broncos victory.
MVP: Drew Brees
While he may not have faced the stiffest of competition, New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees was tremendously effective Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts.
Throwing for 325 yards and a stellar five touchdowns (he only had four incompletions the entire game), Brees was at his best. He distributed the ball effectively, made great choices and ended the game before the Colts had a chance to get any momentum going.
The only thing scarier than what Brees did on Sunday Night Football is what he will do to a St. Louis Rams defense, which was completely emasculated by Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Honorable mention: Arian Foster
More than 230 overall yards and three touchdowns made, Houston Texans running back Arian Foster a major portion of the team's domination of the Tennesee Titans.
For a guy who isn't the biggest fan of fantasy football, he sure was a game-decider today.
LVP: Oakland Raiders Quarterbacks
A confusing quarterback switch from the Oakland Raiders led to one of the worst overall performances so far this season.
With starter Jason Campbell out for the season after a collarbone injury versus the Browns, the Raiders traded for Carson Palmer from the Cincinatti Bengals.
However, backup Kyle Boller was given the start versus Kansas City in order to let Palmer have at least a little time to the Raiders offense.
Needless to say, the game was a disaster from the get-go. Boller would chuck three interceptions (including one returned for a touchdown), and based on these results, he was benched at halftime for Palmer.
Unfortunately, Palmer (who the Raiders picked up for at least one first-round pick) fared equally poorly. He struggled to move the ball and also ended the game with three interceptions, with one of them returned for a score.
The Raiders would lose 28-0, with many questions on how it would adjust to a post-Campbell quarterback regime.