But those who actually voted showed overwhelming support for the Patriots wide receiver.
Kalyn Kahler of Sports Illustrated’s The MMQB reported Tuesday that no one on the Patriots defense received a vote for Super Bowl MVP despite the unit’s dominant performance against the Rams’ high-powered offense.
An NFL spokesperson confirmed this fact to NFL.com, which added that Edelman was not a unanimous winner but received most of the votes from a panel of 16 voters.
Edelman was awesome Sunday, totaling 10 catches for 141 yards as Tom Brady’s most productive target, but many pundits were quick to point out Monday in the aftermath of New England’s sixth title that a few members of the Patriots’ defense might have been more deserving of an MVP nod.
Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore (game-sealing interception, forced fumble, three passes defended) and linebacker Dont’a Hightower (two sacks, three quarterback hits) stood out, in particular, and it’s hard to imagine anyone kicking up a fuss if either of those defensive stars secured the extra hardware.
The reality, however, is the Patriots’ shutdown defense was the product of an excellent game plan and a tremendous team effort. Thus, choosing Edelman — New England’s best offensive player on the night — was the easier pick, especially given the award’s history.
Only 11 non-offensive players have won Super Bowl MVP in 53 years, with Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller being the last to do so in Super Bowl 50.
Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images