Tonight is the 11th edition of the NFL Honors ceremony, and a few big names from the Dallas Cowboys will be present. The two-hour primetime awards special will honor the best players in the league. Nineteen awards will be presented, and the event will be hosted by actor Keegan-Michael Key.
Among those awards are AP MVP, AP Defensive Player of the Year, Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year, and much more. Despite ending their season far earlier than they wanted, the Cowboys have many people vying for some big awards in tonight’s event.
Some awards will be slam dunks for players like Micah Parsons, but other names like Dak Prescott and Dan Quinn will be hoping to win awards in closer races. Aside from the big trophies, the 2022 NFL Hall of Fame class will also be announced at the event. Cowboys legend DeMarcus Ware is eligible for the first year and is considered a finalist.
A lot will happen in this primetime event, but we wanted to give Cowboys fans a viewing guide of sorts. Some of these trophies are already in certain players’ hands, but others will have to keep their fingers crossed.
A Dallas Cowboys fan guide for the NFL Honors ceremony
NFL MVP Award:
For the first six weeks of the season, Prescott had pretty good odds to win this coveted trophy. But, as the offense started to struggle in the second half of the season, his name began to drop further down the list. After nine weeks, the Cowboys were 7-2 and Prescott had 2,300 passing yards. From there, the Cowboys went 5-3 and the quarterback was consistently accused of being in a slump. It’s likely that Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady will win this award, but it’s worth noting that Prescott did have a chance.
Defensive Rookie of the Year:
This is a slam dunk for Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons. They say nothing in life is a guarantee, but this award going home with Parsons is. The Penn State product had an incredible year and became widely known for his versatility, competitiveness, and strength. He was the only rookie defender in the NFL to be named to both the Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro roster. His only competition is Broncos’ Patrick Surtain, who had a great year. But the two just aren’t comparable.
Comeback Player of the Year:
For most of the year, this was also a shoo-in for Prescott. After suffering a gruesome ankle injury that required two surgeries in October of 2020, there is no denying that the Cowboys’ QB has made an impressive turnaround this year. When the Cowboys started 7-2, Prescott led the odds by a lot. Then, soon-to-be Super Bowl QB Joe Burrow caught steam in the second half of the season. After a rough start to Cincinnati’s year Burrow led his team to win the AFC North and take them to the championship. Burrow suffered an ACL and MCL injury last season. Both players are deserving, but it will be interesting to see who wins.
Defensive Player of the Year:
For Parsons to even be considered for this award as a rookie is impressive on its own. If Parsons wins this award, he will become only the second rookie ever to do so. The first was NFL legend Lawrence Taylor. The rookie has tough competition in Pittsburgh Steelers LB TJ Watt, who tied Michael Strahan’s single-season sack total despite missing two games. Watt has been the odds-on favorite for most of the year, but Parsons has remained narrowly behind. Watt will likely go home with the award, but the Cowboys rookie deserves to be in the conversation.
Walter Payton Man of the Year:
This award is one of the most prestigious in the NFL. It honors the player who shows excellence both on and off the field with their charitable actions. All 32 teams nominate a player each season. The Cowboys chose their quarterback whose Faith, Fight, Finish Foundation works to fundraise and bring awareness to causes like cancer, systemic racism, and mental health/suicide. Other Cowboys to win this award include Jason Witten, Troy Aikman, and Roger Staubach. Prescott is going up against prominent names like Mike Evans, Aaron Jones, and Derrick Henry.
AP Assistant Coach of the Year:
This is a newer award that began in 2014. The Cowboys have a great candidate in Dan Quinn for this award. After Dallas had one of the worst defenses in the league in 2020, they finished this season as league leaders in several categories. Quinn helped shape both young and veteran talent and led his squad to a huge turnaround. The Dallas defense helped keep their team in games when the offense wasn’t working well. Quinn’s work was impressive enough to get him several head coaching interviews as well.
Pro Football Hall of Fame 2022 Class:
This year, the class will be named at the NFL Honors ceremony. In his first year of eligibility, Cowboys legend DeMarcus Ware is a finalist. In his 12 years in the league, Ware gathered nine Pro Bowl honors, four All-Pro selections, a Super Bowl ring, and 138.5 career sacks. There are 15 finalists and usually, about four to eight make it in each class. Ware is obviously very deserving based on his resume, but he is going against big names like Jared Allen, Richard Seymour, Devin Hester, and Torry Holt.
Tonight is a very big deal for some of the biggest names in the Cowboys organization. We are wishing all of the players and coaches good luck and hoping they bring home some impressive hardware. The NFL Honors will be at the YouTube Theatre in Los Angeles (very close to SoFi Stadium – the Super Bowl location). You can watch them live on ABC or ESPN at 9 pm EST.