Baltimore Ravens Mid-Season Awards

We are halfway through the 2017 NFL season, and it is time to give out Mid-Season awards to the Baltimore Ravens. The Baltimore Feather’s Mid-Season awards this year include Best Play, Rookie of the Year, Comeback Player of the Year, Offensive Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, and Most Valuable Player. For each award, there will be several nominees, but only one winner. Here are the awards, their nominees, and each winner:

Best Play:

Nominees:

Winner: Michael Campanaro Punt Return Touchdown

The score was 24-16, with 1:55 left in the game. The Ravens were losing to the Chicago Bears and Baltimore needed a spark to force overtime. This is when Michael Campanaro pounced at the opportunity and took off for a 77-yard punt return touchdown. The ensuing play was a two-point conversion pass to Nick Boyle from Joe Flacco to tie the game. The Ravens and Bears would go to overtime, where Baltimore would ultimately come up short. Campanaro provided a desperately needed play for the Ravens in crunch time and gave the Ravens hope that they could pull off a comeback without the offense ever scoring a touchdown.

Rookie of the Year:

Nominees:

  • Marlon Humphrey – Cornerback – Alabama
  • Tyus Bowser – Outside Linebacker – Houston
  • Patrick Ricard – Defensive Line & Fullback – Maine

Winner: Marlon Humphrey – Cornerback – Alabama

Ozzie Newsome loves Alabama defenders. That is why he selected Marlon Humphrey in the first round of this year’s NFL Draft. So far in his rookie year, Humphrey has slowly integrated into the strong Ravens secondary. When he is on the field, Humphrey has been nothing short of outstanding, giving up nothing without a fight. Typically, he wins those fights. He has 15 tackles so far this year and defended four passes. The future looks bright for this young defender, who has the opportunity to become the next great Ravens defender. Special shoutout to Tyus Bowser, who has been a physical presence on the Ravens front line. He has two sacks this year, one interception, and eight tackles.

Comeback Player of the Year:

Nominees:

  • Benjamin Watson – Tight End
  • Javorius “Buck” Allen – Running Back
  • Alex Collins – Running Back
  • Lardarius Webb – Safety

Winner: Benjamin Watson – Tight End

The winner of this award was by far the toughest to decide. An argument can be made for all four contenders. Tight end Benjamin Watson is coming off a year absent from the football field. In the preseason last year, he tore his Achilles and sat out the entire season. Many expected that the Baltimore Ravens would cut him heading into this season, but he managed to stay on the roster and earn the starting tight end role. He is now the Ravens’ second-leading receiver behind Mike Wallace. Javorius Allen is coming off a season where he was practically shunned by the coaching staff, rarely hitting the football field in 2016. He was able to weasel his way into the roster in 2017 and became the Ravens’ second-leading rusher and fourth-leading receiver. Alex Collins is only playing in his second year of professional football. He saw limited action in his rookie season with Seattle and was cut by the Seahawks earlier this year. He found his way onto the Ravens Practice Squad, and then onto the 53 man roster. He is now Baltimore’s leading rusher and the ninth leading rusher in the NFL. Finally, we have Lardarius Webb, a staple in Baltimore since 2009. Lardarius Webb had a mediocre season in 2016 and was released from the team in the offseason. He later re-signed with the Ravens but was intended to be a veteran depth player. However, he quickly reclaimed his role in Baltimore and has been a huge factor in Baltimore’s pass defense this year. Although all these players are more than qualified for this award, Benjamin Watson gets it. Watson was not supposed to return to the team after tearing his Achilles in 2016. Despite this, he was able to become a major presence in the Ravens passing attack. He is one of quarterback Joe Flacco’s most reliable targets.

Offensive Player of the Year:

Nominees:

  • Joe Flacco – Quarterback
  • Alex Collins – Running Back
  • Mike Wallace – Wide Receiver
  • Ryan Jensen – Center

Winner: Alex Collins – Running Back

This award was definitely one of the easier to name a winner for. Baltimore’s offensive production has been lacking for most of the year. However, one player has emerged as the new leader of the Ravens’ offense. That player is Alex Collins. Collins joined the Ravens early on this season, after being cut by Seattle earlier this year. He rose from the practice squad to the active roster, as John Harbaugh and his coaching staff took notice of his explosive capabilities. He was introduced to the Ravens Flock in Week 2 when Baltimore faced the Cleveland Browns. He ran for 42 yards on seven carries. Since that game, Collins has rushed for a total of 478 yards but has yet to find the end zone. Collins is now Baltimore’s leading rusher and the ninth leading rusher in the NFL. Special shoutout to center Ryan Jensen, who has vastly exceeded expectations this year. Jensen has been one of the NFL’s top centers all season and showed off his fierce playing style in defense of Joe Flacco against the Dolphins last Thursday.

Defensive Player of the Year:

Nominees:

  • Terrell Suggs – Outside Linebacker
  • Brandon Carr – Cornerback
  • Jimmy Smith – Cornerback
  • C.J. Mosley – Inside Linebacker

Winner: C.J. Mosley – Inside Linebacker

C.J. Mosley has had yet another fantastic year as the Ravens starting inside linebacker. The Alabama product has already been voted to two Pro-Bowls and is set to be voted to a third after this year. So far this year, Mosley has 68 combined tackles (fourth in the NFL), 2 interceptions, 2 interceptions, including one pick-six, seven run stuff tackles, and half a sack. Mosley consistently has been the best player on the Ravens defense this entire year. Jimmy Smith comes in a close second for this award, as he is having arguably his best season as a professional football player. Jimmy Smith, who has had a history filled with injuries, has played every game so far this season. Throughout the 2017 season, he has made 21 combined tackles, caught 2 interceptions, one returned for a touchdown, and has defended 7 passes. Smith has struck fear into opposing quarterbacks. Smith leads all NFL cornerbacks in passer rating allowed and has only given up 100 yards this season.

Most Valuable Player:

Nominees:

  • Joe Flacco – Quarterback
  • Alex Collins – Running Back
  • C.J. Mosley – Inside Linebacker
  • Jimmy Smith – Cornerback
  • Justin Tucker – Kicker

Winner: C.J. Mosley

C.J. Mosley is currently the best player on Baltimore’s roster. He has played well throughout the entirety of the season, and will likely end up in the Pro Bowl by the end of this season. Mosley’s performance has also stirred the conversation that he may have a chance to be nominated for AP’s Defensive Player of the Year Award. The way Mosley has been playing so far this season, he absolutely has a chance at being a finalist for this award come February. Since being drafted, Mosley has proved himself to be the next great Ravens linebacker, following in the footsteps of Ray Lewis.

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