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Cam Heyward Thinks T.J. Watt Got Robbed for DPOY



Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle Cam Heyward

Pittsburgh defensive tackle Cam Heyward echoed what Aaron Donald said a few weeks ago. He thinks T.J. Watt was robbed for NFL Defensive Player of the Year this past year.

“Man, he is a complete player. I think he was robbed of defensive player of the year,” Heyward said during an appearance on the Rich Eisen Show Wednesday. “I know Aaron Donald said he was robbed a couple of years ago, but man, that dude is a complete player and he’s the best defensive player in our league right now.”

The 2023 DPOY award was given to Cleveland Browns edge rusher Myles Garrett, despite the fact that Watt led Garrett in almost every major defensive statistical category. The Browns star pass rusher edged Watt out in Pro Football Focus’ overall grading and pass rush win rate metric, however. Some voters like Peter King hold that in high regard, hence why he voted for him.

Watt had 68 tackles, compared to Garrett’s 42. Watt had 19 tackles for loss compared to Garrett’s 17. Watt had 36 quarterback hits compare to 30 for Garrett. Each had four forced fumbles, but Watt had three recoveries compared to Garrett’s one. Watt also returned one of those fumbles for the only defensive touchdown of the season between the two players, which happened to be the game-sealing play in the Week 2 game between the Steelers and Browns at Acrisure Stadium.

The Steelers’ defensive captain had 19 sacks this season and set a modern NFL record as the first player to lead the league in sacks for a third time since it became an official statistic back in 1982. Deacon Jones of the Los Angeles Rams unofficially led the league in sacks five times in the 1960s.

“I think the thing that sticks out with T.J. is he has a serial killer approach,” Heyward said. “He doesn’t say a lot, but he lets his play do the talking. You see the energy on Sunday, but everything is so calculated. Everything is about no wasted steps and no wasted movements. I just think his technique is flawless. He’s always trying to get better.”