Most Valuable Player
This award usually garners a bit of debate regarding what constitutes a most valuable player. I say it has to be someone who changes the fortunes of the team he plays for such that without him, the team would not be successful. Using that definition, I rule out guys like Drew Brees (unless the Saints make the playoffs) and DeAngelo Williams, who are both having fantastic years. But really, could the Saints miss the playoffs without Brees? Given that they might miss the playoffs
with him playing so well, that answer seems obvious. So who does that leave? Three names come to mind … Kurt Warner, Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson.
Rookie of the Year
This year’s rookie class will go down in NFL history as one of the best and not just at the running back position. The one guy that stands out to me as deserving of the rookie of the year award is Matt Forte. He currently is the top ranked fantasy running back in my performance-heavy scoring league but besides that, he has served as the lynchpin of the Bears offense this season. With all due respect to Matt Ryan, Steve Slaton and Chris Johnson who each have had outstanding rookie years, Forte leads all rookie running backs in total yards from scrimmage (1,476). What is most impressive though is how much the Bears count on him to contribute to their success. Both Slaton and Johnson have had other backfield teammates to balance their workload and help keep them fresh, but the Bears have relied on Forte so much so that he is not only their leading rusher but their leading receiver. In fact, he has 60 more touches than Chris Johnson and nearly 80 more than Steve Slaton. It will be interesting to see if Forte begins to show signs of hitting the rookie wall the next few weeks but one thing is for sure: he will continue to be the focal point of the Bears offense.
Game of the Week