Adrian Peterson, Robert Griffin III and J.J. Watt Voted Best in the League by their Teammates via’s Players Choice Awards

Share Article

A Record 621 NFL players cast their vote for the NFL's best in their newly created award given to the players, by the players.

Adrian Peterson, Vikings

"As a fellow running back I know how hard it is to return from a knee injury," said Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte. "And for him (Peterson) to be playing so well after a serious one is an inspiration."

NFL players cast their votes to recognize the best in the league on their social media site, The inaugural’s Players Choice Awards was designed to serve as the Voice of the Players, given to the players, by the players. A record 612 current and former NFL players voted on their choice for MVP, Comeback Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year.

Adrian Peterson is the winner of's Players Choice Awards for Most Valuable Player as well as Comeback Player of the Year. In the MVP voting, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson captured 56 percent of 612 votes cast by current and former players. Peyton Manning finished second in the balloting, with 35.5 percent of the votes.

Peterson was also honored by his NFL teammates for the Comeback Player award in recognition of a season in which he defied all expectations of how long it would take him to recover from surgery to repair his torn anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments. Peterson suffered those injuries on Dec. 24, 2011, yet was back on the field for the 2012 season opener and soon was leading the NFL in rushing yards.

By season's end he not only won the rushing title but also came within 9 yards of breaking Eric Dickerson's single-season record of 2,105 rushing yards. Dickerson's record, set in 1984, is one of the NFL's oldest and most respected records.'s Players Choice Awards were conducted online and via the player mobile app where players can instantly vote and comment on their selections.

"As a fellow running back I know how hard it is to return from a knee injury," said Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte. "And for him to be playing so well after a serious one is an inspiration."

Former Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback, Quinn Gray also weighed in on Peterson, “I have to go with AP simply because of the timetable that it took him to rehab from that injury. To do the things he has done this year is simply amazing; especially with the rigor of playing the running back position."’s Players Choice Award winner for Rookie of the Year is Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III with Indianapolis Colts Andrew Luck and Seattle Seahawks Russell Wilson closing trailing behind. Affectionately referred to as RGIII, he led the Redskins to their first NFC East championship since 1999 and set records for rookie quarterbacks along the way. His 815 rushing yards broke Cam Newton's rookie quarterback record of 706, set in 2011 and his 102.4 passer rating ranked third among all NFL quarterbacks this season and surpassed the rookie record of 98.1, set by Ben Roethlisberger in 2004.

The Defensive Player of the Year award was a clear standout for the Houston Texans defensive lineman J.J. Watt. In only his second season, Watt led the NFL with 20.5 sacks, just two shy of the single-season record. This All-Pro brought a new dimension to the defensive end position, with 16 passes defended, a statistic normally reserved for defensive backs. Watt's ability to deflect and bat down passes earned him the nickname of "J.J. Swatt" from Monday Night Football commentator Jon Gruden.

For the full voting percentage breakdown and all the player comments about these awards winners, visit

More About School of the Legends / & was founded in 2009 as a social media and news site, an Officially Licensed Product of the NFL Players, Inc. and serves as "The Voice of the Players”™ with more than 2,500 current and former players contributing to the site. features weekly football and lifestyle blogs by dozens of NFL players and alumni, including Jerome Bettis, Barry Sanders, Patrick Peterson, Will Smith, Dwayne Bowe, Cliff Avril and others. is the player’s site where they comment directly on football news stories of the day and contribute to exclusive player polls that give fans their perspective on the league’s most important issues.

The sister site,, is the premier online source for football training classes with the instructional video series “Legends in Training” that feature players such as Larry Fitzgerald and Tony Gonzalez to name a few as well as instruction from professional coaches and trainers. and are official licensed partners of NFL Players, Inc.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Tresa Halbrooks
Follow us on
Visit website