2017 SCU Awards: Steelers Comeback Player of the Year

Steel City Underground presents the 2nd annual SCU Awards. Our panel of contributors all voted on various awards for the Steelers with the player getting the most votes being the winner. Each article will have the list of nominees with one of our contributors stating their case for why that player earned their vote and deserves the award. Comment and let us know if you agree or disagree with our winners and nominees. 

Comeback stories are some of the best. A player overcoming adversity, whether that be injury or personal demons, makes cheering for them on Sunday’s that much sweeter.

The comeback player of the year goes to the player that had to overcome big obstacles and delivered on the football field.

Here are the nominees…

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Cam Heyward

This category is somewhat limited, but it doesn’t take away what Cameron Heyward has done for this Pittsburgh Steelers team this season. Cam led the team in total sacks and was tied for 8th in the league for total sacks overall. That in itself should qualify for Comeback Player of the Year, especially when one of the only other players to really “come back” on this team was Martavis Bryant.

Not only that, but Cam sacked quarterbacks for a total of 71 yards lost, which was a team high. He tied the team high for tackles for a loss, showing how he could dominate opposing offensive lineman and get into the backfield numerous times. Although he made it as an alternate, Cam is replacing injured Raiders DE Khalil Mack in the 2018 Pro Bowl. The stats speak for themselves. Not only were his stats impressive, but you could feel his presence when he was on the field versus when he wasn’t.

When he went down last season, Pittsburgh could never really find a groove to stop the run for the rest of the season. This year, the entire dynamic of the defense changed when they got their defensive captain back. He’s a vocal leader, and deserves this nod in more ways than one.

– Noah Freeman

As I had mentioned in the Defensive Player of the Year category, Heyward was a force to be reckoned with. He returned from being placed on injured reserve midway through last season to lead the team in sacks and eventually get a Pro Bowl nod as an alternate (replacing the Raiders Khalil Mack).

That’s a huge accomplishment, which overshadowed the lackluster impact of Martavis Bryant’s return (which is the only other “comeback” I felt could also be worthy of this award).

– Joe Kuzma

Winner: Cam Heyward (11 votes)

Runner-up: none

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