INDIANAPOLIS — Saints QB Drew Brees and Eagles RB LeSean McCoy put together special seasons and were honored Wednesday for their efforts.
Brees was announced as the FedEx Air NFL Player of the Year and McCoy as the FedEx Ground NFL Player of the Year during Super Bowl week festivities.
Brees broke the 27-year-old league record for passing yards in a season with 5,476 yards, nearly 400 more than Dan Marino accounted for (5,084) in 1984. Brees also set single-season NFL records with a 71.2 completion percentage and 468 completions.
Brees now has won the FedEx award four times (2006, 2008-09). Saints OT Jermon Bushrod accepted the award on Brees’ behalf.
“I’m truly honored to be named this year’s FedEx Air Player of the Air,” Brees said in a video message. “Thank you to FedEx and to all of the fans who voted for me.”
McCoy ran for an NFL-best 17 touchdowns and was the NFC’s starting running back in the Pro Bowl. He gained 1,309 yards, fourth-best in the league, averaged 4.8 yards per carry and had 84 first-down runs.
“I was competing with some great backs this year,” McCoy said, referring to the other finalists, Baltimore’s Ray Rice and Jacksonville’s Maurice Jones-Drew. “Each week, I’m checking to see what type of stats they put up and each week, Maurice and Ray Rice did a heck of a job. I want to thank my teammates, friends and fans.”
And McCoy sees reason to believe the Eagles can improve upon their 8-8 record in a season that began with a “Dream Team” label.
“We’ll have a full offseason to work together,” McCoy said. “We had a lot of changes of coaches getting new players for this year, but I think we have a lot of great talent on our team. I think, late in the year, we kind of developed and jelled together.
“Coming off this season into next season, I think we’ll be ready,” he added. “We’re going to be in good shape. There’s a little pressure for us to win some games and get to the Super Bowl, but I think, sometimes, pressure’s pretty good for us. Philadelphia can get tough.”
– Matt Florjancic, Special to NFL.com