Sometimes it is really hard to pick a worthy NFL DOTY winner. The criterion are that the DOTY cannot be chosen because of injury or suspension, but must be the player who contributed about as much to his team as a dead man would have.
A few candidates made some noise.
Trevor Lawrence put in a bid leading his team to a 3-14 record. He average an interception per game which were not offset by a measly 12 TD passes (especially since 3 of those came in the first week against the disorganized Texans secondary). Even with a pathetic QBR of 33.5, Red is always reluctant to saddle a rookie with a DOTY award.
Saquon Barkley also deserves consideration. He did miss 4 games but in the 13 where he showed up he managed to rush for all of 593 yards (about 45 YPG) and his 2 rushing TDs were matched by his 2 Receiving TDS. He did contribute to the Giants passing attack with a respectable 41 receptions for 263 yds. Mostly MIA for a terrible team.
Baker Mayfield – Let’s just say that he played so well that the Browns sent him packing and traded for none other than – wait for it –
THE 2021 DEADMAN OF THE YEAR – DESHAUN WATSON
This really needs no explanation. D-Bag Watson managed to embarrass himself and the Texans in all aspects of life, love and the pursuit of a happy ending. After a season in which he led the league in passing yards, yards per attempt and yards per completion and rushed for over 300 yards, Mr. Watson sulked, shamed and staggered his way to a full season riding the pine. The QB who had looked at one point like he might lead the Texans out of two decades of sucking interrupted by brief stretches of mediocrity slipped out of town in the dead of night – possibly wearing only a towel. The only good thing being that the Texans managed to get something out of the failed experiment. Red still remembers Dabo Sweeny claiming that “as good of a player he is, he is even a better person.” Well, Red thinks there is no better person to be crowned the 2021 NFL Deadman of the Year. Congratulations you earned it the old-fashioned way.