Each year since 1971, the Associated Press has awarded NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors to the most outstanding defensive player in the NFL. In 2011, despite some premature predictions that Green Bay Packers LB Clay Matthews would win, Pittsburgh Steelers S Troy Polamalu took home the award.
Kansas City Chiefs LB Tamba Hali was one of the 18 nominees. Nearly the NFL sack champion, I never thought Hali would actually win the award over say a Matthews or Polamalu. But, like with many of these national awards that are considering Chiefs players, I was simply looking for some more recognition.
Unfortunately, Tamba Hali was one of 11 nominees who received no votes. Zip. Zero.
Per Pro Football Talk, here's how the votes broke down:
Polamalu received 17 of 50 votes. Matthews got 15. Steelers linebacker James Harrison received eight, Bears defensive end Julius Peppers got six, Bears middle linebacker Brian Urlacher received two, Ravens safety Ed Reed got one, and Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata got one.
Like I said, I didn't expect Hali to even come close to winning this award. But I think he was deserving of at least one vote, no? What do you think? Was Hali deserving of at least one vote for the NFL Defensive Player of the Year?