PHILADELPHIA, PA (CBS) — This was well deserved and coming. On Tuesday, Maxwell Football Club President, Mark Dianno, announced that Carson Wentz of the NFC Champion Philadelphia Eagles has been selected as the winner of the 59th Bert Bell Professional Player of the Year Award, and also announced that Eagles Head Coach Doug Pederson has been selected as the winner of the 29th Greasy Neale Professional Coach of the Year Award.
In only his second NFL season, Wentz established himself as one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Wentz becomes the sixth Eagle to receive the prestigious Bert Bell Award joining Norm Van Brocklin (1960), Pete Retzlaff (1965), Ron Jaworski (1980), Randall Cunningham, who won it twice (1988, 1990), and Michael Vick (2010), the last Eagle to win the Bert Bell Award. Cunningham also won the award a third time (1988) as a member of the Minnesota Vikings.
Wentz receives the Bert Bell Award after setting an Eagles franchise record for touchdown passes in a season with 33, over 13 games, exceeding the previous mark held by Sonny Jurgensen, who threw for 32 over 14 games in 1961. Wentz, who was lost for the season with a torn ACL during the third quarter of the Eagles’ 43-35 victory over the Los Angeles Rams on Dec. 11, 2017, completed 265 of 440 passes for 3,296 yards during the season.
At the time of his injury, Wentz became one of three players in NFL history (joining Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers, who both have done it twice) to have 33 touchdown passes and no more than seven interceptions in 13 games. He was ranked fourth in the NFL with a passer rating of 101.9, and was named NFC Offensive Player of the Month in October.
During his groundbreaking season, Wentz also had six games with three touchdown passes and four games with four touchdown passes. He had thrown one-plus touchdown pass and no more than one interception in 15 straight games, which is tied for the sixth-longest streak by an NFL QB since 1950.
Wentz joins Hall of Fame running back Earl Campbell (1979) as the only players to have won the Bert Bell Award in their second NFL season.
Pederson becomes the third Eagles coach to win the Greasy Neale Professional Coach of the Year Award, joining Chip Kelly (2013) and Andy Reid (2010). Pederson is also the third Eagles coach to lead the team to the Super Bowl, joining Reid (2004) and Dick Vermeil (1980), and is the only Eagles coach to lead the team to a conference title in just his second year, where he’s compiled a 22-12 record, including playoffs, which is the best two-year start of any coach in franchise history.
Wentz and Pederson will be honored Friday, March 9, 2018 at the 81st Maxwell Club National Awards Gala, which will be held at the Tropicana Casino Resort in Atlantic City, NJ.
Also receiving awards at this event will be: Baker Mayfield – University of Oklahoma (Maxwell Award); Minkah Fitzpatrick – University of Alabama (Chuck Bednarik Award); Bill Clark – University of Alabama at Birmingham (The Thomas Brookshier Spirit Award); Duke Greco – Delaware Valley University (Tri-State Coach of the Year); Shaquem Griffin – University of Central Florida (Uplifting Athletes Rare Disease Champion), and Bobby Bowden – Florida State (The Francis Reds Bagnell Award for Contributions to Football). Other MFC Awards at the high school, college and professional levels will also be announced later this week.
Tickets for the Maxwell Football Club National Awards Gala are available for purchase on the Club’s website or by calling 215-643-3833. Questions concerning any of the Maxwell Football Club’s awards or programs can be directed to MFC Executive Director Mark Wolpert at firstname.lastname@example.org.