As the second half of the NFL season begins to take shape, 32 of the brightest and talented players from around the league have been selected as nominees for the sixth annual Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award.
Each NFL team nominated one of their players for the honor, which recognizes players who exemplify outstanding sportsmanship on the field. Including qualities such as fair play, respect for the game and opponents, and integrity in competition.
The award was created in 2014 in the memory of Pittsburgh Steelers founding owner and Pro Football Hall of Famer, Art Rooney, Sr.
“Art Rooney is an iconic figure in NFL history,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell at the time the award was introduced. “It is appropriate that we honor his legacy in this way and recognize NFL players for one of the important values that Mr. Rooney represented so well.”Rogerl Goodell, NFL
Here is a list of the past recipients of the Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award:
2018 QB Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints
2017 LB Luke Kuechly, Carolina Panthers
2016 RB Frank Gore, Indianapolis Colts
2015 CB Charles Woodson, Oakland Raiders
2016 WR Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
Of the 32 nominees that were recommended for the award for 2019, only eight will be named as finalist for the award (four in the AFC and four in the NFC). That process will be made by a panel of former players from the NFL Legends Community: Warrick Dunn, Pro Football Hall of Famer Curtis Martin, Karl Mecklenburg and Leonard Wheeler.
The finalist will be placed on the pro bowl ballot under the NFL Sportsmanship Award category when players are allowed to vote on Friday, Dec. 13. The winner of the prestigious award will be determined by the finalists’ peers that are currently playing in the NFL. Each team’s players will submit a consensus vote of their choice for the winner. Yet, a team cannot vote for its own player.
2019 Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award Nominees
Arizona Cardinals C A.Q. Shipley
Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones
Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson
Buffalo Bills LB Lorenzo Alexander
Carolina Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey
Chicago Bears DB Kyle Fuller
Cincinnati Bengals DE Sam Hubbard
Cleveland Browns RB Nick Chubb
Dallas Cowboys CB Byron Jones
Denver Broncos LB Von Miller
Detroit Lions QB Matthew Stafford
Green Bay Packers CB Tramon Williams
Houston Texans QB Deshaun Watson
Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton
Jacksonville Jaguars DL Calais Campbell
Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes
Los Angeles Chargers LB Thomas Davis Sr.
Los Angeles Rams S Eric Weddle
Miami Dolphins C Daniel Kilgore
Minnesota Vikings DE Danielle Hunter
New England Patriots WR Matthew Slater
New Orleans Saints T Terron Armstead
New York Giants DL Dalvin Tomlinson
New York Jets DL Steve McLendon
Oakland Raiders QB Derek Carr
Philadelphia Eagles QB Carson Wentz
Pittsburgh Steelers RB James Conner
San Francisco 49ers T Joe Staley
Seattle Seahawks LB K.J. Wright
Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Lavonte David
Tennessee Titans C Ben Jones
Washington Redskins RB Adrian Peterson
Unfortunately, there can only be one recipient of the award. That will be announced during the NFL Honors show, one night before Super Bowl LIV. The player will receive a $25,000 donation from the NFL Foundation to a charity of his choice.
Additionally, the winner will receive a trophy that represents the important role that sportsmanship plays in the game and how NFL players that demonstrate integrity and honor on the field serve as role models for players at all levels.