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Mathis says defensive player of the year would mean a lot

Robert Mathis AP

Colts linebacker Robert Mathis led the NFL with 19.5 sacks this season, and talk that he may win the defensive player of the year award has put a smile on his face.

Mathis has come a long way since entering the NFL as a 2003 fifth-round draft pick out of Alabama A&M, and he said today that an award like defensive player of the year would represent a reward for a decade of hard work since he entered the NFL.

“It would mean a lot,” Mathis said. “It’s definitely something coming in as a rookie that you couldn’t foresee, just trying to make the team. But hard work pays off and I got a lot of teammates that I was able to lean on this year and they were able to help get to this spot right now.”

Mathis topped his previous career high in sacks by eight, something he didn’t expect to do.

“Yeah, it’s hard to get sacks in this league. To be able to get to double digits, to get to 10 sacks is a feat. Being able to get to 19 is way out there. I just feel blessed, honored and just thankful for it,” Mathis said.

Mathis called a players-only meeting today and talked to the younger Colts about the importance of playing their best in the playoffs.

“It’s all well and good. That has to just transform into postseason success. So whatever, got to play within the framework of the defense. They look at me to get after the quarterback and I was able to do that a few times this year, so it just has to continue in the postseason,” Mathis said.

If Mathis continues playing in the postseason like he did in the regular season, that’s bad news for Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith.

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21 Responses to “Mathis says defensive player of the year would mean a lot”
  1. meatcarroll says: Dec 30, 2013 8:26 PM

    Colts D is borderline garbage. Seahawks have the best D by a wide margin and has the best CB and FS in football playing out of their minds. Sherman and Thomas both have better cases than this one trick pony.

  2. afterthesecrowdedstreets says: Dec 30, 2013 8:29 PM

    It’s amazing to consider how Mathis could’ve produced had he spent the majority of his career at Rush backer as opposed to RDE opposite Freeney. Mathis has been a terror all year and it was amazing seeing him strip sack Manning- pretty surreal.

    Here’s hoping for a DMVP and another trophy for Mathis and Indy.

  3. tommymomoney says: Dec 30, 2013 8:36 PM

    How would he be any more deserving than Quinn? Great seasons on bad defenses. Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman both have DPOY type stats and played on the most fierce, suffocating defense in the league on a 13-3 team. Would be a shame if one of them didn’t get it.

  4. coltsreign says: Dec 30, 2013 8:39 PM

    Robert deserves it.
    But i hope those people voting know it.

  5. watermelon1 says: Dec 30, 2013 8:39 PM

    YEAH… Sherman is great as long as the officials let him get away with murder.

    Never seen a corner be allowed to do
    Pretty much anything play after okay.

    Don’t got a problem with earl Thomas. He’s pretty great.

  6. Eli on Injured Reserve says: Dec 30, 2013 8:55 PM

    Don’t they do drug testing in this league? Sure sounds like somebody is a prime candidate to see the man.

  7. lazrrocketarm says: Dec 30, 2013 9:23 PM

    Of course they do drug testing. Just ask the Seahawks secondary!!

    I am sure there are many candidates deserving, but none more so than Mathis.

  8. thestrategyexpert says: Dec 30, 2013 9:29 PM

    He’ll win the award and get extra points on the basis of his long and good career. Besides no fun in seeing Robert Quinn win it ever year. Let’s delay the repetition of that by one year.

    Sorry Robert, if it’s not beginner’s luck then you can do it all again!

    And Richard, c’mon man. You only played mostly up to your talk, you didn’t complete the entire process, know the rules!

  9. natijim235 says: Dec 30, 2013 9:30 PM

    Vontaze Burfict MVP – WHO DEY!

  10. thebirdofprey2 says: Dec 30, 2013 9:41 PM

    The Colts defense ranks behind Steelers, Broncos , Jets, Bills and Browns in the AFC alone.

    In total the 20th ranked defense doesn’t compete with the likes of Sherman, Keuchly, E. Thomas, Dansby or even Bowman who all play on top 6 defenses. Robert Quinn defense even ranks top 15.

  11. jasonlfranks says: Dec 30, 2013 9:50 PM

    Quinn should win. Even though he won’t.

  12. rhabdodontidae says: Dec 30, 2013 9:57 PM

    What difference does it make what his teams defensive ranking is?

    All the Hawks ranking proves is that Sherman and Thomas aren’t doing it alone.

    It’s player of the year, not defense of the year.

  13. partmachine says: Dec 30, 2013 9:57 PM

    What else does he do?

    And Vontaze Burfict Isn’t even in the conversation. He’s a scumbag, he and Pacman will surely fight for first arrest after they’re sent home this weekend.

  14. thebirdofprey2 says: Dec 30, 2013 10:04 PM

    Are you kidding me? What difference does a team defense ranking make.

    If an offensive player put up huge yardage and his team was ranked in the bottom 1/3 of the NFL you think people would consider him as MVP or OPOY of league?? If that’s the case JJ Watt would still get the award over Mathis. .

  15. csilojohnson says: Dec 30, 2013 10:17 PM

    Individual award. Bad overall defensive rank only makes a better case for Mathis. Way to miss the point.

  16. stephenolszewski says: Dec 30, 2013 11:11 PM

    Mathis deserves it I always felt he didn’t get enough credit, as good as Freeney was Mathis was just as good

  17. thestrategyexpert says: Dec 30, 2013 11:18 PM

    Burfict is purfict, I coined the phrase before the draft that he got shafted in.

  18. drsummeroff says: Dec 30, 2013 11:30 PM

    Quinn should get it. Great pass rusher but also very good against the run….and unlike mathis, he plies his trade mostly in the nfc west, where men play, not against the weaklings of the afc south.

  19. bobman2 says: Dec 31, 2013 12:26 AM

    To expand a bit, he is the best defensive player on a division champ. If any individual was so great on St Louis, why are they out of the playoffs? It’s a stupid argument, but on par with the birdofprey2 argument above about a bottom 1/3 unit. (which will be disproven below–how does he measure bottom 1/3? height? Yards don’t win games–points do. Ever hear of garbage time?)

    To further undermine the Quinn argument (BTW, I love the guy and his stats are almost equal those of Mathis) he has a couple holy terrors rushing the QB with him, meaning he is not the one guy doubled every play like Mathis is, and still he did not accumulate as many sacks or forced fumbles as Mathis. Therefore he did slightly less with more opportunities. How can he be considered to have had as good a year? (On a pure stats basis, Mathis has one-half more sack, one more FF, two more tackles–they both play the run well for rushers, far better than Mathis’s rep, BTW.)

    Quinn will win it soon and more than once I suspect. Also, this is the kind of award that could one day be named for JJ Watt, much like the MVP could be for Manning–ignoring stats, Watt may well be the most dominating defensive force for a solid decade, deserving of the award every year. He’ll get more as well. He suffers this year because his stats are not as gaudy as last year, and his team truly sucks–like Manning having a merely excellent year after a couple all-time great years (2005) and getting shafted for MVP by a RB who had a solid all-pro line. duh.

    As for the D backfield guys, they tend to benefit more from a good pass rush than the rushers benefit from a good D backfield, and Sherman and his pro bowl cohorts in Seattle also have a mighty DL in front of them creating havoc. When a QB hocks one up in desperation, they benefit; when he is rushed or nervous and misreads the D because of the pass rush, they benefit. They are excellent players, but once again, they get a lot of support. It would take a SUPER lot for a CB to win the award, because they are not involved in every play like a lineman or LB is, or a SS who plays like an added LB at times, a CB at times, and a FS at times (Reed, Sanders, Polamalu in recent years).

    One final way to look at is could be, where would this D be without this person’s production? Seattle without Thomas or Sherman… still a top D. STL without Quinn? Still a brutal D. Similar with Burfict in CIN and Kuechley in Carolina. Indy, which is a middle-of-the-pack D, would be in sorry, sorry shape without Mathis.

    Actually, for those of you melonheads who say they are a crap defense, in terms of pts allowed, Indy is on par with KC! Bet you didn’t know that! Indy is 9th in pts allowed, 1.9 PPG behind KC and CIN, 0.1 PPG ahead of NE, 1.0 PPG ahead of Baltimore, and 1.8 PPG better than STL–wait, STL is a worse Defense!?!? That’s hilarious!). So if Indy’s “poor D” disqualifies Mathis, then nobody from those teams clustered around and below them should be considered either, right? Sorry Quinn, Burfict, Houston, Hali, Suggs, Talib and your DPOY supporters.

  20. pastabelly says: Dec 31, 2013 8:24 AM

    Keuchly will get strong consideration as well (even though that flag for PI in the endzone on him never should have been picked up).

  21. pkaiser59 says: Jan 1, 2014 11:42 AM

    Two words…………Luke Keuchly.

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