|NFL awards from the Associated Press|
The Associated Press NFL Offensive Player of the Year Award is given annually by the Associated Press (AP) to the offensive player in the National Football League (NFL) deemed to have had the most outstanding season. The winner is chosen by votes from a nationwide panel of sportswriters who regularly follow the NFL. Multiple-time awardees include Marshall Faulk and Earl Campbell, both of whom won the award three times, each consecutively. Jerry Rice, Barry Sanders, Tom Brady, Terrell Davis, Drew Brees, and Peyton Manning have each won the award twice. The award is currently held by quarterback Matt Ryan of the Atlanta Falcons, who received it for the 2016 NFL season after leading the league with a 117.1 passer rating.
Every winner of the award has been either a running back or a quarterback, with the exception of Rice, who won twice as a wide receiver. Running backs have been awarded 24 times, followed by quarterbacks, with 19 awards. Of the 45 winners, 27 were also named the AP NFL Most Valuable Player in the same season. Since 2011, both awards have been given out at the annual NFL Honors ceremony along with other AP awards, including the AP NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award and AP NFL Offensive and Defensive Rookie of the Year Award.
Players are often awarded after record-breaking or near-record-breaking offensive seasons. Running back O. J. Simpson won the award for 1973 after rushing for a record 2,003 yards, becoming the first NFL player to rush for 2,000 yards in a season. When his record was broken by Eric Dickerson in 1984, Dickerson placed second in voting behind quarterback Dan Marino, who that year was the first to pass for 5,000 yards in a season. Marino's 5,084 yards stood as the record for 27 years before being broken by Drew Brees in 2011, who won that season's award. In turn, 2013 winner Peyton Manning set league single-season records for passing yards (5,477) and passing touchdowns (55).
|†||Inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame|
|‡||Denotes player who is still active in the NFL|
|Player (X)||Denotes the number of times the player has received the award|
|1972||Brown, LarryLarry Brown||Running back||Washington Redskins|||
|1973||Simpson, O. J.O. J. Simpson||Running back||Buffalo Bills|||
|1974||Stabler, KenKen Stabler||Quarterback||Oakland Raiders|||
|1975||Tarkenton, FranFran Tarkenton||Quarterback||Minnesota Vikings|||
|1976||Jones, BertBert Jones||Quarterback||Baltimore Colts|||
|1977||Payton, WalterWalter Payton||Running back||Chicago Bears|||
|1978||Campbell, EarlEarl Campbell||Running back||Houston Oilers|||
|1979||Campbell, EarlEarl Campbell (2)||Running back||Houston Oilers|||
|1980||Campbell, EarlEarl Campbell (3)||Running back||Houston Oilers|||
|1981||Anderson, KenKen Anderson||Quarterback||Cincinnati Bengals|||
|1982||Fouts, DanDan Fouts||Quarterback||San Diego Chargers|||
|1983||Theismann, JoeJoe Theismann||Quarterback||Washington Redskins|||
|1984||Marino, DanDan Marino||Quarterback||Miami Dolphins|||
|1985||Allen, MarcusMarcus Allen||Running back||Los Angeles Raiders|||
|1986||Dickerson, EricEric Dickerson||Running back||Los Angeles Rams|||
|1987||Rice, JerryJerry Rice||Wide receiver||San Francisco 49ers|||
|1988||Craig, RogerRoger Craig||Running back||San Francisco 49ers|||
|1989||Montana, JoeJoe Montana||Quarterback||San Francisco 49ers|||
|1990||Moon, WarrenWarren Moon||Quarterback||Houston Oilers|||
|1991||Thomas, ThurmanThurman Thomas||Running back||Buffalo Bills|||
|1992||Young, SteveSteve Young||Quarterback||San Francisco 49ers|||
|1993||Rice, JerryJerry Rice (2)||Wide receiver||San Francisco 49ers|||
|1994||Sanders, BarryBarry Sanders||Running back||Detroit Lions|||
|1995||Favre, BrettBrett Favre||Quarterback||Green Bay Packers|||
|1996||Davis, TerrellTerrell Davis||Running back||Denver Broncos|||
|1997||Sanders, BarryBarry Sanders (2)||Running back||Detroit Lions|||
|1998||Davis, TerrellTerrell Davis (2)||Running back||Denver Broncos|||
|1999||Faulk, MarshallMarshall Faulk||Running back||St. Louis Rams|||
|2000||Faulk, MarshallMarshall Faulk (2)||Running back||St. Louis Rams|||
|2001||Faulk, MarshallMarshall Faulk (3)||Running back||St. Louis Rams|||
|2002||Holmes, PriestPriest Holmes||Running back||Kansas City Chiefs|||
|2003||Lewis, JamalJamal Lewis||Running back||Baltimore Ravens|||
|2004||Manning, PeytonPeyton Manning||Quarterback||Indianapolis Colts|||
|2005||Alexander, ShaunShaun Alexander||Running back||Seattle Seahawks|||
|2006||Tomlinson, LaDainianLaDainian Tomlinson||Running back||San Diego Chargers|||
|2007||Brady, TomTom Brady||Quarterback||New England Patriots|||
|2008||Brees, DrewDrew Brees||Quarterback||New Orleans Saints|||
|2009||Johnson, ChrisChris Johnson||Running back||Tennessee Titans|||
|2010||Brady, TomTom Brady (2)||Quarterback||New England Patriots|||
|2011||Brees, DrewDrew Brees (2)||Quarterback||New Orleans Saints|||
|2012||Peterson, AdrianAdrian Peterson||Running back||Minnesota Vikings|||
|2013||Manning, PeytonPeyton Manning (2)||Quarterback||Denver Broncos|||
|2014||Murray, DeMarcoDeMarco Murray||Running back||Dallas Cowboys|||
|2015||Newton, CamCam Newton||Quarterback||Carolina Panthers|||
|2016||Ryan, MattMatt Ryan||Quarterback||Atlanta Falcons|||
The award is typically given to the league's most productive quarterback or running back. Of the 41 times it has been given, it's been won 39 times by either a quarterback or running back. The exception is San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Jerry Rice, who won the award in both 1987 and 1993.
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