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Detroit Lions awards | 2022 season


Tim Twentyman: Quarterback Jared Goff

The Lions don't get to 9-8 without Goff's 4,438 passing yards, 29 touchdowns and stretch of 324 passes without an interception to end the season.

Mike O'Hara: Quarterback Jared Goff

He was a steady hand from start to finish and sharp in the last nine games with 15 TD passes and no interceptions.

PJ's Pick: Quarterback Jared Goff

The best ability is availability - Goff got better as the year went on and played in every game for the first time since 2019.

Editor's Pick: Quarterback Jared Goff

Let's complete the sweep. It takes talent and leadership to guide a team back from a 1-6 start.

Offensive Player of the Year

Tim Twentyman: Wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown

St. Brown is becoming a superstar in this league after catching 106 passes for 1,161 yards and six touchdowns in 2022.

Mike O'Hara: Wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown

Splitting this with the MVP Award makes sure that St. Brown gets the credit he deserves on his own for a splendid second season – 106 catches, 1,161 yards and six TDs.

PJ's Pick: Tackle Penei Sewell

Sewell doesn't have the counting stats, but his speed, athleticism and even his hands allowed coordinator Ben Johnson to open up the offense in ways that most other teams can't.

Editor's Pick: Running back Jamaal Williams

Williams had his first 1,000-yard rushing season, lead the league in rushing TDs (17) and broke Barry Sanders' franchise record for TDs in a season.

Defensive Player of the Year

Tim Twentyman: Defensive lineman Aidan Hutchinson

Production. Production. Production. Hutchinson's 9.5 sacks led the Lions and all rookies, and he also chipped in three interceptions, 52 tackles, nine tackles for loss and two fumble recoveries.

Mike O'Hara: Defensive lineman Aidan Hutchinson

The Lions got what they wanted in drafting Hutchinson second overall – 9.5 sacks, 15 QB hits and the awareness to intercept three passes to show he's a football player and not just a pass rusher.

PJ's Pick: Defensive lineman Aidan Hutchinson

For the full season, no player did more for the defense than the No. 2 overall pick, especially under the bright lights at Lambeau to end his rookie year.

Editor's Pick: Defensive lineman Aidan Hutchinson

Another deserving sweep. It's always good to see a No. 2 overall pick live up to his potential and then some.

Most Improved

Tim Twentyman: Running back Jamaal Williams

Usually, this award goes to a young player and not a six-year veteran, but there's no denying Williams upped his game in 2022 with his first career 1,000-yard season and a franchise single-season record 17 touchdowns.

Mike O'Hara: Linebacker Alex Anzalone

He was more comfortable and productive in his second season as a Lion – 125 tackles with 7 tackles for loss vs. 75 and one in 2021.

PJ's Pick: Defensive lineman John Cominsky

Playing just four games for Atlanta in 2021, Cominsky went from being waived at the end of May to second in pressures and QB hits for a team that went 9-8 - sometimes all a player needs is a chance.

Editor's Pick: Cornerback Jeff Okudah

After an injury-filled first two seasons in the NFL, it was good to see Okudah play almost every game with some flashes of great play. He's a candidate to repeat this award next year.

Rookie of the Year

Tim Twentyman: Defensive lineman Aidan Hutchinson

The Lions might forever be in the debt of Jacksonville for passing on Hutchinson in last year's NFL Draft with the No. 1 overall pick and allowing him to fall to No. 2 and become a cornerstone of the defense for years to come.

Mike O'Hara: Linebacker James Houston

In only seven games, from Weeks 12-18, he had eight sacks, seven tackles for loss, 11 QB hits, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He chewed up stats like they were popcorn at a movie.

PJ's Pick: Linebacker James Houston

Houston made a historically-great impact right when the Lions needed it, opening up space and time for Hutchinson and the rest of the defensive line down the stretch.

Editor's Pick: Defensive lineman Aidan Hutchinson

Had to go Hutchinson again, but it's a good sign for the future he had quite a few challengers for the award.

Best Play

Tim Twentyman: Penei Sewell's catch | Week 14

There's nothing better than watching big guys get an opportunity to catch or run with the football. Sewell's nine-yard catch on a 3rd & 7 play to ice the Minnesota game Week 14 was awesome all around from its design, timing and execution.

Mike O'Hara: Hook and lateral | Week 18

On 2nd & 17, Goff to St. Brown to Swift for 16 total yards. Converted first down on fourth and one. Brilliant call and performance.

PJ's Pick: Brock Wright's game-winning TD | Week 15

With the offense struggling late in must-win road game, Johnson dialed up a fourth down play-action pass to a tight end with a drop earlier in the drive. In a season full of redemption stories, there's none better than Wright's 51-yard touchdown.

Editor's Pick: Kerby Joseph's interception | Week 18

Maybe it's recency bias, but it proves his two-INT performance vs. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers earlier in the season wasn't a fluke.