Bednarik Award Adds 13 Athletes to Midseason Watchlist

    The Bednarik Award added 13 deserving defensive players to their midseason watchlist including UNC EDGE Kaimon Rucker, aka the Butcher.

    The defensive performances during the 2023 season have been dominant. There have been stalwart pass-rushing efforts from a variety of defensive linemen, amazing run stuffs from linebackers, and ball-hawking secondary players have wowed.

    The Bednarik Award has added 13 deserving athletes to its midseason watchlist due to some of these performances.

    Bednarik Award Adds 13 Athletes to Midseason Watchlist

    The Bednarik Award is handed out annually to the best defensive player at any position. It is given to the player who exemplifies the defense’s prowess and is handed out to the most outstanding defensive player in the country from the Maxwell Foundation.

    With some defensive players coming from obscurity, the Bednarik Award added 13 players to its massive preseason watchlist due to some amazing performances to date in 2023.

    Those 13 new players are:

    • Jaylin Simpson, S, Auburn
    • Mohamed Kamara, EDGE, Colorado State
    • Malaki Starks, S, Georgia
    • Jalen Green, EDGE, James Madison
    • Ashton Gillotte, EDGE, Louisville
    • Kris Abrams-Draine, CB, Missouri
    • Kaimon Rucker, EDGE, North Carolina
    • Howard Cross III, DT, Notre Dame
    • Denzel Burke, CB, Ohio State
    • Danny Stutsman, LB, Oklahoma
    • James Pearce Jr., EDGE, Tennessee
    • T’Vondre Sweat, DT, Texas
    • Jonah Elliss, EDGE, Utah

    More About the Bednarik Award

    The Bednarik Award is named after Chuck Bednarik, a 2x NFL champion and 10x First-Team All-Pro Linebacker for the Philadelphia Eagles from the 1940s to 1960s. Bednarik is a member of both the Pro and College Football Hall of Fames and is given out annually as part of the Maxwell Football Awards.

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