3:17 p.m. ET

Many friends, family, and even virtual strangers have told me that I have a really great job. Well, I can’t disagree because of one important aspect of my job. You see, when I stand around the coffee maker with co-workers and talk football, I’m working!

Such was the case earlier this week. I was talking with Matt Waechter, the man responsible for publishing and designing layouts for all of our content on, about how we’ll soon have Peyton Manning’s uniform on display here in Canton.

Tomorrow night Joe Horrigan, our VP-Communications/Exhibits, will be at Lucas Oil Field to accept the uniform from Peyton. The Indianapolis Colts quarterback wore it during last season when he was named the NFL’s Most Valuable Player. The uniform will promptly go on exhibit in our Pro Football Today Gallery next to the uniforms of the past couple MVPs – Tom Brady (2007) and LaDainian Tomlinson (2006).

We’re always developing layers of information around a story on That’s when Matt began studying the list of MVPs over the years to see if anything jumped out for an idea that we can build upon. He shared his observation with me. While I was acutely aware of the fact, it’s well worth expanding upon and now serves as the basis of today’s blog.

Since 1961 the Associated Press has awarded an annual NFL Most Valuable Player Award. Amazingly only three times in those 48 seasons the award has gone to a player other than a quarterback or running back. Three times. In other words, the same number of times that Manning has won the award. He, along with Packers, I mean Jets, umm, Vikings' QB Brett Favre are the only players ever to win the award three times.

The first time the AP gave the MVP to a player other than a QB or RB occurred was 1971 when Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive tackle Alan Page of the Minnesota Vikings earned the honor. He led the Minnesota defense that limited its opponents to a mere 139 points that season.  At the time, that was the second fewest amount of points allowed in a season since 1949. The Vikings, two years earlier, held opposing offenses to just 133 points and the Philadelphia Eagles led the NFL in 1949 with 134 points en route to winning the league title that season.

{GALLERY}After Page more QBs and RBs won the award until 1982 when the AP gave it to a kicker! Mark Moseley of the Washington Redskins, the NFL’s last straight-ahead placekicker, nailed his last three FGs in ’81 and then continued a successful string in 1982 that ran to a then-NFL record 23 straight field goals. Washington finished 8-1 in the strike-shortened season, rolled through the playoffs and capped the year with a Super Bowl XVII victory.

The NFL didn’t have to wait that long for another non passer or runner to win the MVP award. That came four seasons later when New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor amassed an incredible 20.5 sacks to help the Giants to a great season. Like Moseley in ‘82, Taylor and the Giants came away with a Super Bowl victory that year.

One of the best ways we can capture and record a memorable moment in NFL history is receive a game used item from the player. Such was the case in 1982 when Moseley donated his shoe and jersey he wore during that great record-setting ’82 season.

And now, we are so excited that we’ll be able to add to our collection the uniform worn by Peyton last season.
This time next year, we’ll be receiving memorabilia from the 2009 MVP. And who knows, that could even come from a player who doesn’t line up over center or in the backfield!

Well, it’s back to the coffee maker for some more ideas for my blog.

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