Awards and trophies encourage people to participate more and perform better everyday. No matter what age the player is, appreciation always helps people to grow regardless of their work field. In same way, to keep the track of player’s interest, there are so many awards awarded to them. Football trophies can also be described as a way to celebrate the success of a player and reward their efforts. Interestingly, there are not just one or two category awards in football but a lot of varieties of football.
In this article, we will give you a detailed description of all the awards presented in the National Football League as well as the National Collegiate Athletic Association Football. Excitingly, one can win these awards for themselves individually as well as for the team collectively. It depends on what category award one is targeting. So, let’s begin with the National Football League awards and achievements.
You must know that the National Football League is the highest level of American football which presents plenty of awards to give recognition to the players and teams for their efforts. The NFL represents a list of prestigious football awards each year one night before the Super Bowl.
1. Vince Lombardi Trophy
One of the most prominent and prestigious awards presented by the NFL is the Vince Lombardi Trophy. It is often given to the victorious team of the Super Bowl in each season. It is basically the award for the NFL championship. Originally designed by Tiffany & Co. Vince Lombardi Trophy was first awarded to the winner of the first NFL world championship game known as Super Bowl in 1967. Eventually in 1970, it was named after Vince Lombardi, the Green Bay Packers head coach.
2. Lamar Hunt Trophy
Lamar Hunt is a team award which is awarded to the American Football Conference Champion each year. It was named after Lamar Hunt who is the founder of Kansas City Chiefs.
3. George Halas Trophy
This award is also a team award which is generally given to each season’s National Football Conference Champion which means the winner of NFC championship game. It was named in the honour of the owner, founder and long-time head coach of the Chicago Bears, George Halas.
4. Brunswick Balke Collender Cup
It may come as a shock to you but Brunswick Balke Collender Cup was only awarded once in 1920 to the Akron pros for winning the APFA championship that year. Shortly afterwards, this trophy got lost and since then nobody has found out about its whereabouts.
5. Ed Thorp Memorial Trophy
This Trophy was first awarded to the NFL Champions in 1934 i.e. winner of the second NFL championship game. And the last time it was awarded was in 1969 to the winner of the final NFL Championship game. The Ed Thorp Memorial Trophy was named after Ed Thorp, longtime NFL referee who took his last breath in 1934. Just like Brunswick, its current whereabouts is unknown. It is also believed that the last receiver of this award, the Minnesota Vikings, lost it.
6. Most Valuable player
This is an individual award which is awarded to the player deemed to be the most valuable in the NFL in each season. It’s a press associated award and most recognisable in today’s time. Many selectors have gotten to chose the MVPs over years including the United Press International, Newspaper Enterprise Association and Pro Football Writers Association. The first award to honour the most valuable player of the NFL was Joe F. Carr Trophy first awarded in 1938.
7. Defensive player of the year
As the title suggests, the defensive player of the year award goes to best annual performing defender. The winner is selected by various selectors each year. Awards given for this category include Pro Football Writers Association NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Associated Press NFL Defensive Player of the year award, and Newspaper Enterprise Association Defensive Player of the Year award.
8. Super Bowl Most valuable player
This award is awarded to the most valuable player of the Superbowl in each season. Unlike other mentioned awards, the winner of this award is selected by fan votes during the game and a joint panel of 16 Football broadcasters and writers who also vote after the game. While public vote make up the 20% of vote tally only, the rest of 80% counts for the Media panel ballot.
This prestigious trophy was first handed out in 1967 and since then it has been awarded every year. Until 1989, it was presented by SPORT magazine while since 1990, it has been presented by the NFL.
9. Coach of the Year
Strikers and players are not the only ones to get awards but coaches are also included in this category. Several organisations present Best Coach of the year award to the most outstanding coach of the season. The Associated Press has also given an Assistant Coach of the Year Award since 2014.
10. Pro Bowl
Just like the Super Bowl, the Pro Bowl is also an all-star game of the NFL. The very first Pro Bowl game was played in 1951 to give recognition to the best performing players of the league in the 1950 season. Before the inception of the Pro Bowl, NFL held an all-star game from 1938 to 1942.
After we went through a whole series of trophies presented in the NFL, it’s time for National Collegiate Athletic Association Football. We will list both individual and Team awards, so pay attention.
1. The College Football Playoff Nations Championship Trophy
In simple words, this award is given to the winner of the CFP National Championship game. But there is a limitation for playing the CFP National Championship game i.e. only two winners of CFP semifinals can play and get the chance of winning the most prestigious award in College football. Let us tell you the names of three prominent winner of this extremely valuable achievement.
- Georgia Bulldogs (2021)
- Alabama Crimson Tide (2020)
- LSU Tigers (2019)
2. Heisman Trophy
The Heisman Trophy is awarded at the end of each year to the player who has been the most impactful individual on the pitch in the following year. A winner is chosen among the four finalists and he or she finally gets the highest level honour in the form of this trophy. Just like the Most Valuable Player award in the NFL, Heisman Trophy is often awarded to the quarterbacks as they are believed to be the most impactful position holders in football. Some of the prominent winner names are:
- Bryce Young – QB Alabama (2021)
- Devonta Smith – WR Alabama (2020)
- Joe Burrow – QB LSU (2019)
3. Bowl Game Trophy
Similar to Super and Pro Bowl games in the NFL, College Football also holds the Bowl games. Each Bowl game comes with a chance to secure a trophy as the sponsor of the bowl game also presents a Trophy for the winner to claim. An interesting fact about this trophy is that every bowl game has its own uniquely designed trophy to honour the winner of the game.
4. Rivalry Game Trophies
Different from all the conceptual achievements, Rivalry Game Trophy is basically given to the winner of a game between rivals each year. Every year, two major rival teams play against each other. Team which are actually compatible and share a long and influential history of rivalry between themselves. The Trophy differs for each rivalry and is decided upon by the two teams. Unlike Bowl Game Trophy, only one trophy is passed from one winner to another year by year.
A winner can keep or display the trophy as the symbol of their victory for one year until the next winner is decided. Some of the most popular examples of this trophy are Paul Bunyan’s Axe, the Victory bell and Floyd of Rosedale.
5. Positional Trophies
We haven’t even mentioned a quarter of how many trophies we have told you about. Ahead of the Heisman Trophy, there are a variety of individual honorable awards for best coaches as well as players. Players and coaches are lucky enough to have such a large scope of winning awards. There are 26 awards that are given to the best players in each category at each position. Some of these most popular awards include Doak Walker Award, Davey O’Brien Award, and Fred Biletnikoff Award (Brilliant Receiver).