Could A Ram Win The Deacon Jones Award This Season?

The new generation - Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

The 2013 St. Louis Rams will try to bring the 1st ever Deacon Jones Award home.

Over the weekend, the NFL made one of the best moves in recent memory. They announced the league will be giving the Deacon Jones trophy. This award will be given annually to players with the most sacks in the season. Since "The Secretary of Defense" originally coined the term "sack", this award was a long time coming.

The Rams will more than likely do something in Jones' honor, but the best way the Rams can honor him is to win the inaugural award. If only winning the award was that easy?

The Rams best defensive linemen right now, is easily Chris Long. The problem is that QB hurries and hits might be important - and Long has been great in those categories - they still aren't sacks. Long had 13 sacks in 2011, and last season he had 11.5 sacks, which is good, but it's not good enough to win the award. However, one person at NFL.com thinks that Long can win the award.

  • Jason SmithNFL.com
  • Chris Long is primed to bust out in 2013

    Get ready for a remake of "Just The Two Of Us," except with Howie and Chris Long as the stars. Everything is set up for Long to explode from a solid performer into breakout player.

    The St. Louis Rams tied for the league lead in sacks last year, and their defense is just going to get better with young playmakers all over the field. Long is the best pass rusher they have -- by far -- and he'll reap the numbers reward. At 28, he's set up for a dominant next 2-3 years. He'll jump from 11.5 sacks last season to 20-22. All year long, we'll compare father and son, and talk about how apropos it would be for a Ram to win the first Deacon Jones Award.

    And now the bigger question: When I mentioned the song atop this blurb, were you picturing Will and Jaden Smith or Dr. Evil and Mini-Me?

Long isn't the only player on the team who could push for this award. I'm talking about 3rd year veteran Robert Quinn. When the Rams drafted Quinn in the 1st round in 2011, they envisioned him becoming a talented pass rusher, but they knew it wouldn't happen overnight. The team brought him along slowly. In his rookie season, he had 5 sacks, and last season as a full time starter he notched up 10.5 sacks.

Here's a quick look at the 2012 stats

TACKLES SACKS INTERCEPTIONS FUMBLES
RK PLAYER TEAM AST TOTAL COMB SACK YDSL PD INT YDS LONG TD FF REC TD
1 J.J. Watt, DE HOU 12 69 81 20.5 139 16 0 0 0 0 4 2 0
2 Aldon Smith, LB SF 16 50 66 19.5 145 1 1 6 6 0 3 0 0
3 Von Miller, LB DEN 13 55 68 18.5 130 2 1 26 26 1 6 0 0
4 Cameron Wake, DE MIA 15 38 53 15.0 92 1 0 0 0 0 3 0 0
5 Clay Matthews, LB GB 11 32 43 13.0 84 2 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
6 Charles Johnson, DE CAR 11 30 41 12.5 100 4 0 0 0 0 7 1 0
Geno Atkins, DT CIN 14 39 53 12.5 90 2 0 0 0 0 4 0 0
8 Jared Allen, DE MIN 10 35 45 12.0 63 3 0 0 0 0 1 1 0
9 Julius Peppers, DE CHI 7 32 39 11.5 74 2 0 0 0 0 1 4 0
Chris Clemons, DE SEA 9 31 40 11.5 87 4 0 0 0 0 3 1 0
TACKLES SACKS INTERCEPTIONS FUMBLES
RK PLAYER TEAM AST TOTAL COMB SACK YDSL PD INT YDS LONG TD FF REC TD
DeMarcus Ware, LB DAL 23 33 56 11.5 64 0 0 0 0 0 5 1 0
Chris Long, DE STL 8 25 33 11.5 74 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Michael Johnson, DE CIN 17 35 52 11.5 71 2 1 3 3 0 0 1 0
14 Elvis Dumervil, LB DEN 22 32 54 11.0 83 1 0 0 0 0 6 0 0
Anthony Spencer, LB DAL 40 55 95 11.0 83 3 0 0 0 0 2 1 0
Greg Hardy, DE CAR 20 41 61 11.0 86 2 0 0 0 0 2 1 0
17 Mario Williams, DE BUF 9 37 46 10.5 51 4 0 0 0 0 2 2 0
Robert Quinn, DE STL 5 24 29 10.5 61 2 0 0 0 0

This chart basically shows Quinn or Long could need 20 sacks to win the award. However, if we look at the 2011 season, Minnesota Viking DE Jared Allen had 22 sacks. Before that, the last time a player had 20 sacks was in 2008 by DeMarcus Ware.

Nothing in the NFL happens easy. Both of these players could be looked at as long shots to win the Deacon Jones award. However, it would be a good thing for the Rams, the league, and the late great Deacon Jones if a member of the Rams could win the award first.



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