With 49 tackles, one sack, one forced fumble, seven interceptions, one touchdown, and 11 passes defended, Troy Polamalu beat Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews by two votes for Defensive Player of the Year.
Personally, my vote probably would have gone to Matthews or Haloti Nagata (who received one vote), but Polamalu was certainly worthy despite missing two games.
“It’s quite humbling,” Polamalu said in an interview with NFL Network, who aired the announcement of the award. “Clay Matthews is an amazing football player. There’s a lot of players that could be in this position.”
Behind Polamalu — who received 17 or 50 votes — Matthews received 15, Steelers linebacker James Harrison received eight, Bears defensive end Julius Peppers got six, Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher got two, and Ed Reed received one vote along with Ngata.
Another guy who deserved consideration but was likely left out because he’s a rookie was Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, who recorded 10 sacks, 49 tackles, three passes defended, one interception, and one forced fumble.
Suh, however, is more than likely going to be the pick for Defensive Rookie of the Year.