USA TODAY US Edition
THE HARRISONS: WEEK 1
We introduce our award for NFL players who didn’t even deserve a participation trophy:
Jameis Winston, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
OK, it was one game. We get it. But, still, he was the top pick, and the guy who was selected right behind him was on the same field. And that guy finished with a perfect passer rating. We understand if Bucs fans — and the front office — didn’t sleep well Sunday.
Houston Texans defense
Sure, the video of J.J. Watt losing his helmet then sacking the Kansas City Chiefs’ Alex Smith was entertaining, but this defense was supposed to carry the team. It performed better in the second half but was bad enough in the first half to deserve the award.
Andrew Luck, QB, Indianapolis Colts
Super Bowl bound? The chic pick to win the AFC this season came out and fell on its face under the heavy blitz of the Buffalo Bills. This is a game in which the star quarterback needs to pick his team up — not throw picks.
Steven Hauschka, K, Seattle Seahawks
It wasn’t all bad for the Seattle kicker, who converted all three of his field goals and both of his extra points. But a flubbed overtime kickoff, which coach Pete Carroll said “was supposed to be kicked way down the field” turned into an onside kick and gave the Rams a short field in St. Louis’ 34-31 victory. It’s not uncommon for kickers to cost a team a game in the NFL. It’s just really uncommon for it to happen on a kickoff.
Kam Chancellor, S, Seahawks
The perfect award for a guy who didn’t participate. We felt the Seattle safety needed recognition, especially because the guy replacing him was responsible for the Rams tying the score late in the fourth quarter.