NFL notebook: Peterson beats Manning for NFL MVP
Adrian Peterson's sensational season following major knee surgery has earned him the Associated Press 2012 NFL MVP award.
Earlier Saturday, Peterson won Offensive Player of the Year.
The Minnesota Vikings running back finished with 2,019 yards, 9 yards short of breaking Eric Dickerson's rushing record. Peterson beat out Peyton Manning, who in his first season as Denver's quarterback contended for a fifth MVP trophy. Manning's four are a record.
Peterson received 30 1⁄2 votes from a nationwide panel of 50 media members who regularly cover the NFL. Manning got the other 19 1⁄2 votes.
Peterson led the Vikings from a 3-13 mark to 10-6 and a wild-card playoff berth. He is the first running back to win MVP since LaDainian Tomlinson in 2006.
Manning, who returned from four neck surgeries, won the NFL Comeback Player of the Year award. Manning received 31 1⁄2 votes, easily beating Peterson, who got 17 1⁄2 votes. Kansas City RB Jamaal Charles got one vote.
The Redskins' Robert Griffin III beat out fellow quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson to win the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award.
“It's truly a blessing to be up there — to be able to stand, first and foremost,” said Griffin, who underwent knee surgery last month. He added that next season “you'll see a better Robert Griffin.”
Wearing a burgundy and gold tie, in honor of his Skins, Griffin said his goal is to be ready for the season opener.
Bruce Arians became the first interim coach to win Coach of the Year honors. Now the head coach in Arizona, he replaced Chuck Pagano in September when the Colts' coach was diagnosed with leukemia. Arians went 9-3 before Pagano returned, and Indianapolis made the playoffs at 10-6, making Arians an easy winner. Pagano finished second with 5 1⁄2 votes, while Pete Carroll of Seattle received five and Leslie Frazier of Minnesota got three.
“It's hard to put into words the feelings of this past year,” said Arians, who was hired by the Cardinals in late January. “This was kind of the cherry on the top, whipped cream and everything else you put on top.”
Houston end J.J. Watt swatted the competition for Defensive Player of the Year, getting 49 votes; Denver's Von Miller got the other vote in the most lopsided balloting of all the awards.
“In my plans it was there,” Watt said of being honored. He led the NFL with 20 1⁄2 sacks and also blocked 16 passes. “It sets the bar for me. I want to go out and do even better. I want to do even bigger things.”
Carolina linebacker Luke Kuechly, the league's leader in tackles with 164, won the top defensive rookie award.
Giants RB Bradshaw has another surgery
New York Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw is expected to be sidelined two months after undergoing another surgery to replace a screw in his right foot, according to an NFL.com report.
Bradshaw showed up at Saturday's autograph session at the Super Bowl NFL Experience with a motorized scooter and a walking boot. He told reporters he underwent the surgery two weeks ago.