Fans Can Vote for Manning to Win 2008 Fed Ex Air NFL Player of the Year Award
INDIANAPOLIS – He spent the last two months leading the Colts to the playoffs, and was named the Associated Press' National Football League Most Valuable Player.
Now, Peyton Manning is a finalist for another prestigious award.
Manning, who last Friday became the third player in NFL history to be named AP's Most Valuable Player three times, is a finalist for the 2008 FedEx Air NFL Player of the Year Award, the league announced on Monday.
Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints and Kurt Warner of the Arizona Cardinals also are finalists for the Air Player of Year Award, and running backs Adrian Peterson of the Minnesota Vikings, Michael Turner of the Atlanta Falcons and DeAngelo Williams of the Carolina Panthers are finalists for the 2008 FedEx Ground NFL Player of the Year.
Fans may vote for one player in each category on NFL.com/FedEx from 2 p.m. Monday through noon on Friday, January 23. The winners will be announced on Wednesday, January 28 at a press conference during the week of Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, Fla.
The Air candidates at a glance:
• Manning, who led the Colts to an NFL–record sixth consecutive season with 12 or more victories and a seventh consecutive playoff appearance, completed 371 of 555 passes for 4,002 yards, 27 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. In the final month of the season, he completed 90 of 110 passing attempts for 1,054 yards and eight touchdowns with a 130.8 passer rating. He also had four games with 300 or more yards passing and executed six fourth quarter/overtime game-winning drives. He was nominated for the FedEx Air NFL Player of the Week award four times and won once.
• Brees led the NFL in pass attempts (635), completions (413), passing yards (5,069) and completions of 25 yards or more (35), and his 5,069 passing yards made him the second player in NFL history to surpass the 5,000-yard mark. He is the only Saint to pass for more than 4,000 yards in three consecutive seasons and his 34 touchdowns were a franchise record. He had 10 games with 300 or more yards passing, tying an NFL record, and twice he passed for more than 400 yards. He was nominated for the FedEx Air NFL Player of the Week five times and won twice.
• Warner led the Cardinals to a 9-7 record, setting franchise records for single-season completions (401), attempts (598), passer rating (96.9), passing touchdowns (30) and completion percentage (67.1). His 4,583 passing yards ranked second in Cardinals history and second in the NFL. He had seven games with 300 or more yards passing and was nominated for the FedEx Air NFL Player of the Week award five times and won twice.
Manning, a Pro Bowl selection the last seven seasons who was voted to start the game again this season, shared the MVP Award with then-Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair in 2003 when he led the Colts to the first of five consecutive AFC South titles.
He then repeated as MVP the following season when he set a then-NFL record by throwing 49 touchdown passes.
Brett Favre (1995-1997) and Jim Brown (1957-1958, 1965) are the only other players to win three MVP awards.
The Colts, after winning their final nine regular-season games to qualify for the postseason, lost to the San Diego Chargers, 23-17, in overtime, in an AFC Wild Card Playoff game on Saturday.
As part of this season's Air & Ground program, FedEx teamed up with Safe Kids USA – a national non-profit organization that works to prevent accidental injury among children – to deliver safer kids by making weekly $1,000 donations in each of the winning players' names.
The funding directly benefits local Safe Kids coalitions in that team's city, to fund pedestrian safety improvements throughout the year.
Additionally, FedEx hosted special safety events throughout the season in various NFL markets. These local programs showcased the various pedestrian safety initiatives that FedEx has been proud to supFedEx also made donations to the local Safe Kids coalitions in each of these cities.
FedEx will make a special $25,000 donation to the Tampa Safe Kids chapter, as well as make $25,000 donations to the winning FedEx Air & Ground NFL Players of the Year players' local Safe Kids coalitions. This year, FedEx celebrates its fifth year of the program and surpasses the $1 million mark in funding to create safer communities for children.