45th Annual Photo Contest

45th Annual Photo Contest

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"Reed Street" by Patrick Smith
Freelance photographer Patrick Smith is the winner of the Dave Boss Award of Excellence for his entry in the 45th Annual Pro Football Hall of Fame Photo Contest. His photo titled “Reed Street" was deemed the Photograph of the Year for the 2012 National Football League season.

The black-and-white feature image shows Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed with eyes closed before a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sept. 10, 2012 at M&T Bank Stadium. Four A-10 Thunderbolt II airplanes performing a flyover during the National Anthem can be seen in perfect formation behind Reed.

Smith is a photographer based in Baltimore who covers that metropolitan region and beyond. A Baltimore native, Smith freelanced throughout college while at Towson University. In 2009 he worked as a staff photographer at a Utah newspaper before he returned to Maryland in 2011. Currently, he fulfills the editorial, action, and commercial needs for clients and also regularly shoots Ravens games.

The Hall of Fame’s prestigious contest is open to professional photographers ordinarily on assignment to cover NFL games. Photos taken during the 2012 NFL season, that included Super Bowl XLVII and the 2013 Pro Bowl, were eligible.
Smith’s entry was the first place winner in the Feature category while Carlos Avila Gonzalez of the San Francisco Chronicle placed first in the Action category. His photo titled “Can't Catch Me!” illustrates San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree leaping into the end zone against the Arizona Cardinals at Candlestick Park on Dec. 30, 2012.

Judging was conducted at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in early April by a panel of prominent photo editors and photographers. The judges included Ben Liebenberg, Photo Editor/Lead Photographer, National Football League; John Reid, III, Team Photographer, Cleveland Browns; Brad Smith, Director of Photography, Sports Illustrated; Ed Suba, Staff Photographer, Akron Beacon Journal; and Tony Tomsic, a nationally acclaimed freelance photographer who has shot every Super Bowl to date.

Smith will be officially honored at the Enshrinees GameDay Roundtable, part of the 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival that centers on the enshrinement of the Class of 2013. Larry Allen, Cris Carter, Curley Culp, Jonathan Ogden, Bill Parcells, Dave Robinson, and Warren Sapp will be formally inducted on Saturday, Aug. 3. The GameDay Roundtable is held on Sunday, Aug. 4 before the Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins kick off the 2013 preseason in the NFL/Hall of Fame Game later that evening. Also highlighting this summer’s Enshrinement Festival is the Hall of Fame’s Golden Anniversary Reunion as upwards of 130 Hall of Famers are returning to take part in the Enshrinement Festival.


Action Winners Feature Winners


 Listen to the award winners describe their shots>>>


Sports Illustrated's Director of Photography Brad Smith talks about what it means to serve as a judge
Ben Liebenberg, photo editor/lead photographer for the NFL, discusses the winning action shot
Ben Liebenberg discusses the winning feature shot
Ben Liebenberg shares the traits he looks for in a winning shot


The late Dave Boss spent nearly four decades working for the NFL and led NFL Properties creative division for 26 years. He was an award-winning photographer in addition to leading the publishing and design efforts for the league. In 1992 he was awarded the prestigious Daniel F. Reeves Pioneer Award by the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

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