NFL Honors for McVay, Gurley, and Donald validate Rams in 2017 and beyond

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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The Los Angeles Rams added a few more “wins” before the season finally ends with the Super Bowl on Sunday, as Sean McVay, Aaron Donald, and Todd Gurley take home some hardware from the NFL Honors.

An amazing 2017 season for the Los Angeles Rams concludes tonight as the “Big 3” in LA took home significant awards at the NFL Honors Saturday night.

Defensive tackle Aaron Donald won 2017 Defensive Player of the Year. Donald finished the season with 41 tackles, 11 sacks, and five forced fumbles for the Rams. His closest competition for the award was Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end, Calais Campbell.

This season, the second for the team back in Los Angeles, saw a monster turnaround on the offensive side of the football. But under first year defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, Donald was again the anchor for one of the league’s premier defenses.

Also taking home some well deserved hardware was running back Todd Gurley. Gurley rebounded from an absolutely dismal 2016 that saw him all but disappear from the Rams offense. He’d earn Offensive Player of the Year finishing ahead of Antonio Brown and MVP Tom Brady.

Gurley led the league with 2,093 yards and 19 touchdowns from scrimmage. His outstanding production also included 64 receptions for 788 yards and six touchdowns.

Perhaps the most predicted win was for first year head coach Sean McVay.

McVay would win NFL Coach of the Year, besting some coaches who authored tremendous seasons in 2017, including Mike Zimmer in Minneapolis, Doug Marrone in Jacksonville, and Doug Pederson in Philadelphia.

The first year head coach turned around a vastly under-performing Rams team who was dismal on offense. That would also include getting Jared Goff, who looked to be be treading the “bust” label, to play like the top overall pick he was.

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McVay was the likely winner of this award. He completely changed a toxic culture with the Rams, and made Los Angeles an important franchise for the NFL, in a city the league was desperate for a presence in.

11-6 didn’t hurt either.

All the awards bode well for the Rams as they will be a favorite in the NFC West, and perhaps more in 2018.