View Full Version : Polamalu Voted Steelers MVP
12-30-2010, 04:02 PM
Steelers safety Troy Polamalu was recognized for his outstanding play today by his teammates who voted him the teamís 2010 Most Valuable Player. It is the first time in Polamaluís eight-year career that he has received the honor, making him the first Steelers safety in 30 years to win the award.
Polamalu, who was named to his sixth Pro Bowl and his fifth as a starter, is tied for the AFC lead and for second in the NFL with six interceptions. He was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week during consecutive weeks in December (Weeks 13 and 14).
In typical Polamalu fashion, he saved his biggest plays for when the Steelers needed it most. Among Polamaluís many highlight-reel plays was his Week 2 goal line stop of Tennessee quarterback Kerry Collins when Polamalu jumped over the pile to deny an attempted quarterback sneak for a touchdown. In Week 13, Polamaluís sack and forced fumble of Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco set up the game-winning touchdown in a 13-10 Steelers victory. Polamaluís knack for timely plays was on display again in Week 14 when he intercepted two passes, returning one 45 yards for a touchdown.
Polamaluís 81 tackles rank sixth on the Steelers despite missing the last two games due to injury. A perennial All-Pro selection, Polamalu was previously named to the 2005-09 AFC Pro Bowl squads.
Polamalu is the first Steelers safety to be named team MVP since Donnie Shell in 1980 and the first defensive back to win the award since Rod Woodson in 1993.
12-30-2010, 04:44 PM
Well deserved honor, Troy has been outstanding all year long. The defense is a different unit when he is on the field. He proved this year that he's still a top flight Safety and a playmaker at any given moment.
12-30-2010, 04:45 PM
I'm happy to see this and also happy that he's Pro Bowl bound!!!
I'd liked to have seen Wallace and either Timmons or Farrior make it to Hawaii.....
Maybe as reserve players...
12-30-2010, 06:46 PM
Imagine where we would be if we never drafter troy?
12-30-2010, 07:51 PM
I agree troy has been pretty solid all year, but back during the season i recall quite a few people asking "where is troy tonight" and "troy seemed absent tonight" during game threads...and i believe a thread was started a few months ago saying "troy not troy of old"...what gives, seems like some folks jumping back on the bandwagon now that he has had a very strong close to the regular season
12-30-2010, 08:42 PM
Congrats Troy...well deserved. I didn't realize Donnie Shell won it also...
12-31-2010, 01:56 PM
Ed Bouchette on the Steelers: Polamalu reluctant MVP winner
With all due respect to his fellow voters, Troy Polamalu wants nothing to do with the most valuable player award of the Steelers.
It's not that he does not appreciate the honor, bestowed by a vote of his teammates; he prefers there be no such thing as team MVP nor even the Steelers' Walter Payton Man of the Year award he also picked up Thursday.
"I would have to say that football is such a perfect team sport, and it's hard to make anybody -- especially our team and the way we play on defense -- a most valuable player," Polamalu said. "I've never been a fan of either award."
Polamalu, who was chosen for his sixth Pro Bowl in his eight seasons with the Steelers, became only the second safety chosen as Steelers MVP since the award began in 1969. The other safety to win it was Glen Edwards in '74.
Now all he wants to do is get back on the playing field. Coach Mike Tomlin said Polamalu, who missed the past two games with an Achilles tendon-related injury, will try to practice today.
"I am hoping to play this week, whatever is coach Tomlin's decision," Polamalu said.
His teammates would welcome the return as they play a vital game Sunday in Cleveland that will determine their playoff status. A victory will give them the No. 2 seed in the AFC and a bye in the first week of the playoffs with a home game in the second week. A loss combined with a Baltimore victory against Cincinnati, would drop the Steelers to the sixth seed as a wild-card team that would play all its games on the road, starting the following weekend.
"We need him," Hines Ward said. "You got plenty of time to rest. We win this game, you can rest all next week. He doesn't have to practice until the following Friday, for all we care.
"This is a big game and having him out there, I think he'll be rested up. We'll see. He's going to try to go, I think. Having him out there on the field makes our team, makes our defense better than what they are."
Polamalu is a big reason the Steelers are in position to win the AFC North Division and finish with a 12-4 record, which would match their record for the 2008 season, the previous time they won the Super Bowl. They held the No. 2 seed in the AFC that season as well.
"He's one of those players who is special, who makes the plays that no one else can make on the football field," defensive end Brett Keisel said. "We'll be happy to get him healthy and back out there with us."
Polamalu delivered three game-turning plays this season on consecutive weeks. He intercepted a pass at the 2 late in the game that prevented Buffalo from winning Nov. 28. He caused a fumble when he sacked quarterback Joe Flacco in Baltimore Dec. 5 that set up the winning touchdown with 2:51 left. His interception for a touchdown in the second quarter Dec. 12 erased a 7-0 Cincinnati lead, and the Steelers went on to a 23-7 victory.
Typically, Polamalu downplayed his role in all of them.
"There are so many different parts that go into making plays. The Buffalo play was actually made by Willie Gay. He actually broke up the pass. The Baltimore play was a good call. Anybody could have made that play. Nobody tried to block me or anything like that. I am honestly not trying to be humble. This is just the truth. The Cincinnati play was made by [Bryant McFadden]."
His teammates and defensive coach weren't buying it.
"A lot of us in here think he should be the league defensive MVP," Keisel said. "It seems like when we need a big play or someone to step in and make something happen, Troy nine times out of 10 is that guy."
Defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau said that in his eighth season Polamalu is playing better than ever.
"He's a very special player. He can play at all levels of the defense -- he can blitz, he can play linebacker depth and he's a heck of an interceptor. We're always a lot better when he's in the game."
Polamalu leads the Steelers with six interceptions, ranks sixth with 81 tackles, has a sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. But statistics don't tell the whole story how Polamalu impacts a game, including how he bounces around before the snap of the ball to confuse the offense.
"He means so much to our team," Ward said. "He's just the X-factor, he really makes a difference. With him on the field playing, I know he gives us that opportunity, something's going to happen. When we need something the most, 99.9 percent of the time he's come up big.
"I think it's actually his first time winning it. You would think a guy of his magnitude would win it every year."
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10365/1114522-66.stm#ixzz19iHTPgzR
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