NFL Network’s Peter Schrager on Monday made an interesting off-handed comment about 49ers linebacker Fred Warner during a highlight package from San Francisco’s win over the Patriots.
While a highlight showing Warner’s interception of Patriots quarterback Cam Newton rolled, Schrager said, “Fred Warner, by the way, in the conversation for Defensive Player of the Year.”
That would be pretty remarkable for the 2018 third-round pick from BYU. But is it really possible?
It’s a long shot since players in Warner’s position don’t often win. Luke Kuechly is the only inside linebacker to win the award since 2010. Going back to 2000, Ray Lewis won the award twice, Derrick Brooks once, and Brian Urlacher once. Those all came between 2000 and 2005 when the run game was much more prevalent in the NFL.