Jan 19, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) holds the Lamar Hunt trophy after the 2013 AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field against the New England Patriots at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
There are few things in this world toward which I am more apathetic than the yearly self-absorbed display of those celebrities who love the aroma of their own flatulence; to which the main stream media refers as Awards Season.
I don’t care who Miley twerks and I couldn’t care less (and yes folks, the correct, grammatical term is “COULDN’T CARE LESS, it’s not “could care less”) whose pre-meditated “wardrobe malfunction” has network executives up in arms.
However, I have taken it upon myself to produce my own awards-style piece here, celebrating our own Denver Broncos.
The beauty of The Matty Awards is that, for starters, there is virtually no budget required (I mean other than my monthly energy bill, and my daily fast food dinner to feed my creativity, what else is needed?). As for the statue itself? Da Vinci’s David? A golden football? Bob’s Big Boy? It’s whatever you want it to be. Also, we don’t have to be bored with some pretentious red carpet rubbish as to “who we are wearing.” But if any of you are curious, and I know you are, your humble writer here is wearing hoodie by CCM, ball cap by Starter (1996 vintage), jeans by Wrangler, hiking boots by Timberland, and skivvies by Haines. (T.M.I. on that last one?)
<> I think I just realized why these designers are all tiny in stature. If they were any bigger, only contestants in the Worlds Strongest Man competition could “wear” them all over the place, all day long. Ask one of these people to carry Oprah around all day long. I think not.
Anyway, I thought that as a member of Broncos’ Country, it would be appropriate to honor our orange-and-blue-clad gladiators for their prowess on the field…and maybe some off the field honors and/or shenanigans. So without further ado, I present to you the inaugural Matty Awards! (Cue the “Tonight Show with Johnny Carson theme music)
Offensive Player of the Year: There were so many deserving candidates that The National Academy of Mattys (NAMs) had a really tough time even narrowing it down to our four finalists. That said, the finalists are:
Peyton “Freakin” Manning
Peyton Williams Manning
And the Matty goes to (insert drumroll and dramatic tension)…
PEYTON “FREAKING” MANNING!!!!!
That’s right, Peyton “Freakin” Manning lead the Broncos, the NFL, the history books, and the solar system in almost every conceivable category. He even led the Denver Broncos to a 13-3 regular season record and a march through the AFC Playoffs, into Super Bowl XLVIII. Despite an embarrassing loss in the big game, it was an outstanding year for the future, first ballot hall-of-famer. For his efforts, Peyton “Freakin” Manning claims the very first Matty award ever.
Welcome back to the inaugural 2013/2014 Matty Awards. To present the award for The-Best-Offensive-Player-Not-Named-Manning, here’s has-been actress, Judith Light and washed-up quarterback, JaMarcus Russell (enter crickets’ sounder here) Hey, like I said, we have a small budget here, Jack!
The nominees for the award for The Best Offensive Player, Not Named Manning are:
OMGosh! History is made at the Matty’s. We have a 4-way tie. Knowshon, for being the best safety valve for Manning all year, for rushing for over 1000 yards, for picking up the blitz as if your life depended on it, and for scoring all of those touchdowns; Demaryius, for being one of the best deep threats in the game, for stretching the field and opening throwing lanes for the other targets, and for many TDs; for Julius Thomas who has become one of the most dangerous pass-catching tight ends in the game; and for Louis Vasquez who earned all-pro honors and kept pressure up the middle off of Peyton Manning most of the year, thus allowing those other nominees to win this honor as well.
Hey guys, come on down and get your virtual trophy.
To give out our next award, give a big NAMs welcome to Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke (we got a discount and thought some twerking might help spice up the show).
Robin: “We’re here tonight to present the award for the Big Ugly Offensive Lineman of the Year award” (Keith Jackson’s vernacular, not mine)
Miley: “I tried twerking with a few of these guys, but rubbing up against their knee caps doesn’t have the same effect.”
Robin: “Any way, the nominees are:”
And the Matty goes to…”LOUIS VASQUEZ!!!” Quite possibly John Elway‘s best free agent acquisition (in deference to Wes Welker), Vasquez earned pro-bowl and all-pro honors in his first year in the orange and blue.
OK, in the interest of time and money, I am going present the remainder of the awards myself.
Defensive Front-7 POTY award: These are the guys who by the end of the year, overcame injuries to Kevin Vickerson, Von Miller (also a stupid drug offense), and Derek Wolfe as well as a demotion of Wesley Woodyard to become very instrumental in the run to the Super Bowl. The nominees are:
The Matty for Defensive Front-7 POTY is…DANNY TREVATHAN. Trevathan, the second year linebacker out of the University of Kentucky put his stamp on this defense as the guy who always finds his way to the ball. If he is not making a tackle, he’s dadgum close. He has become a leader on the defense and I argue, may even be more important than the #2 overall pick in 2011, Von Miller.
So Danny Trevathan, come and accept this extremely prestigious awards.
Defensive Secondary POTY award: Like the front-7, this was a unit that had to overcome injuries to Champ Bailey through most of the year and Chris Harris in the divisional playoffs against San Diego. Yet they still managed to be relatively effective. The nominees are:
And the Matty goes to…CHRIS HARRIS! I realize that his season-ending ACL tear was what the secondary had to overcome in the AFC championship game and Super Bowl. However, the bottom line is that Harris was flat-out the best DB the Broncos had and proved it in 2013.
So Chris Harris, I’ll throw the Matty to you…and don’t worry, aside from DRC, there really isn’t anybody who can pick it off; no matter how badly I throw it.
Inspiration of the Year award: quite frankly, PFM would have won this in 2012, if the Mattys existed but will have to step aside for head coach, John Fox. Fox is the only nominee for this award. While playing golf near his North Carolina home during the Broncos’ bye week after week 9 of the season, Foxy got light-headed and was taken to a local hospital where it was discovered that he had a defective aortic valve; for which he had replacement surgery to rectify this. This kept him out from week 10 until week 14 against Tennessee. So John Fox, please accept the Matty for the Inspiration of the year.
Comeback POTY award: I am not sure where they had gone, but the following nominees somehow found their way back:
Terrence “Pot Roast” Knighton
All four of these guys are very deserving of the award. Rodgers-Cromartie, who was jettisoned by Arizona and Philadelphia after being highly touted coming out of the 2008 draft.
Manny Ramirez was thrust into the center position after Dan Koppen went down with a knee injury on day 1 of training camp. And despite an unfortunate first snap of the Super Bowl, Ramirez played very solidly; particularly in the second half of the season.
It was just the 2011 season when yet another injury to Knowshon Moreno (in addition to an ineffective first couple of years in the league) made him look like the biggest draft bust of the Josh McDaniels era. Toward the end of the 2012 season we started to see why Moreno was selected with the #12 pick of the 2009 draft.
In 2013, Knowshon announced his presence as one of the best all-purpose running backs in the NFL with authority.
And what can we say about “Pot Roast”? Terrence Knighton not only has the best nickname in the NFL, but also had plenty left in the tank after being casted off by the lowly Jaguars. His former head coach in Jacksonville, and current Broncos’ defensive coordinator, Jack Del Rio clearly knew something that the rest of us didn’t when he (probably) suggested Knighton to the front office as a quality free agent pick-up. Though he struggled in the pre-season, he became the stalwart on the defensive line in the absences of Vickerson and Wolfe.
The Matty for Comeback POTY goes to…KNOWSHON MORENO. I almost talked myself out of this selection after laying out Pot Roast’s credentials for this award. However, I stuck with my original pick since Knowshon has been through so much in his 5 years in Denver and us fans with him. He’s the embodiment of the perseverance that Broncos’ football has always been about. So Knowshon Moreno, I shall hand off this Matty award to you…unless you want me to throw it to you out in the flat.
The Emotional Moment of the Year award: Claiming his second Matty of the night, KNOWSHON MORENO earns the Emotional Moment of the Year award for the almost incredulous water works displayed during the national anthem prior to the week 11 game in Kansas City. Before we have you come up to get your Matty statue, Knowshon, we’ll have to cover all electronics.
The Embarrassing Moment of the Year: We go all the way back to week 1 against the Baltimore Ravens. Yup, you guessed it. DANNY TREVATHAN come on down for your second Matty of the night. Trevathan earned this award for dropping the ball 1-yard shy of the goal line in a showboating moment after a would-be pick-6 against Joe Flacco. Since then, he has proven himself to be one of the three most important players on the defense. However this does not take away from his most embarrassing moment. Come get your second statue and please wait until you sit back down and place it on the table. Just sayin’!
The Moron Move of the Year: We have a three-way tie for this inauspicious Matty Award. No pomp and circumstance here and I don’t think I need to point out what these three recipients did to earn this Matty. The winners (or losers) are Von Miller, Matt Russell, and Tom Heckert. Moving on.
And the final Matty of the night is for the Oh No He Di’in’t Moment of the Year award. This is for the play or moment which makes us rub our eyes to make sure we saw what we think we saw.
I go back to week 5 in Dallas when we saw something that if we didn’t see it for ourselves, we’d never believe it actually happened. With the ball inside the Cowboys 5-yard line, PEYTON “FREAKIN” MANNING went play action and instead of throwing to one of the many weapons at his disposal, he tucked the ball and went all “naked-bootleg” on Dallas. He not only caught them off-guard, but caught the cameramen, CBS Producers, and us fans off-guard. The only response I could come up with was, “OH NO HE DI’IN’T!!!” So PFM, come on down and grab your second Matty award of the evening. And don’t try to fool us, we’re ready for you this time.
Well that’s it. The 2013/2014, inaugural Matty Awards extravaganza is now in the books. I hope you enjoyed the show and the good Lord willing, we can add the category, “The Best Super Bowl Winning Moment” award to the proceedings.