(Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt had a career year last season with leading the league in sacks (15), tackles for a loss (23) and quarterback hits (41). Many believe the Associated Press snubbed Watt last year by selecting Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald as Defensvie Player of the Year over him.
I'm sure not winning the award has added plenty of motivation for Watt this offseason and he knows that he still has work to do.
"I just want to be the best possible player I can be, not just for myself but for the Pittsburgh Steelers," Watt said via Teresa Varley of Steelers.com. "I want to make splash plays. The big thing for me is noticing the plays I didn't make last year, wishing I could have converted on some forced fumbles, fumble recoveries, sacks, tackles for a loss. There is a lot of good from last year, but there is a lot of stuff I can continue to improve on. That is why I love this game so much. You are never at your ceiling. I am just trying to get better each and every year. That is what I intend to do starting with this minicamp."
NFL.com’s Next Gen Stats ranked Watt as the most disruptive player in 2020, and if he puts up similar numbers this year, I can't see how the AP doesn't give him DPOY. Maybe he needs to get 20.5 sacks in a season like his brother J.J. did twice -- 2012 and 2014, which both resulted in him winning the award. Perhaps that's the ceiling that Watt needs to break through to reach that next level.