Beat Writer & Videographer
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers had two worthy candidates -- Mike Williams and LeGarrette Blount -- for the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Award, but both were beaten out by St. Louis quarterback Sam Bradford.
While both wide receiver Mike Williams and running back LeGarrette Blount each had terrific first-year campaigns for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, both players were beaten out for the Offensive Rookie of the Year Award by St. Louis quarterback Sam Bradford.
Towards the end of the 2010 season, it seemed as though Williams and Blount were competing against each other on a weekly basis for the right to be honored as the best offensive rookie, but both players fell short.
Williams, who was a fourth-round pick out of Syracuse, was the more consistent of the two rookies for Tampa Bay in 2010. He earned a starting job during training camp and made the most of every opportunity. The 6-1, 212-pound Williams scored a touchdown in each of his first two games as a pro and finished the season with a franchise-record 11 touchdown receptions. For the season, Williams had 65 receptions for 964 yards (14.8 average).
On the other hand, Blount started the season on the bench, but made a late season push for the award. The undrafted free agent out of Oregon started the final seven games of the season and finished his rookie year with 1,007 rushing yards on 201 carries (5.0 avg.) and six touchdowns. Blount (6-0/248) earned the Offensive Rookie of the Month Award for December for his late season play in which he rushed for 511 yards on 87 carries (5.9 avg.) and scored two touchdowns.
Williams and Blount became the first rookie teammates since 1968 to lead their incoming class in receiving and rushing yards. However, both players were outshined by the No. 1 pick in the draft.
Bradford, who played his collegiate ball at Oklahoma, had a stellar rookie season. After going just 1-15 in 2009, Bradford helped the Rams go 7-9 and almost reach the playoffs in 2010. The 6-4, 228-pound Bradford completed 354 of his 590 passes, which broke Peyton Manning’s rookie record for most completions in season, for 3,512 yards with 18 touchdowns and 15 interceptions, while compiling a QB rating of 76.5. He also had one rushing touchdown and 63 yards on the ground.
Bradford becomes the first Rams player to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year Award since running back Jerome Bettis in 1993.
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