Their postseason runs may have come to an end last weekend, but former Penn State standouts Micah Parsons and Saquon Barkley are among the finalists for a pair of NFL awards for the 2022 season. Both players already have rookie of the year awards to show off in their trophy collection, and with any luck each could be adding some fresh hardware to their mantles.
Parsons is one of the three finalists for this season’s NFL defensive player of the year award after his second season with the Dallas Cowboys. He is up against Nick Bosa of the San Francisco 49ers and Chris Jones of the Kansas City Chiefs.
Parsons, who was the unanimous winner of the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year last season, was named All-Pro and selected to the Pro Bowl Games after recording 149 combined tackles in 17 games this season. Parsons had 14 TFL and 13 sacks this season. Although he fell short of his goal of breaking the NFL’s single-season sack record, he still proved to be a dominant defensive force for the Cowboys for the majority of the season.
Barkley is a finalist for the NFL comeback player of the year, and he will have some stiff competition for the honor as well. Barkley is up against 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith. Barkley rushed for 1,312 yards and 10 touchdowns for the New York Giants this season, who advanced to the NFC divisional round after scoring two touchdowns in his playoff debut in the wild card round.
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Story originally appeared on Nittany Lions Wire