Last night ESPN hosted their yearly award show "The ESPY's". It's one of my favorite nights of the year, honestly. There is so much hostility in sports. The whole concept about them is besting the ones next to you; not giving up an inch and doing whatever you can to get ahead. It's a lifestyle that often consumes you year-round to be the best at some of the most extreme costs.
But for one night all of these athletes, regardless of sport, age or gender, all get dressed up and celebrate, well, each other. Though these athletes are all about competing, this one night proves that the collective often means more than the competition. Advancing the sports world as a whole by celebrating the success of others is not only a great thing to do as human beings but also has a lot of benefits. Finding different ways to be the best athlete they can be, identifying selfless acts in the community and using different sports platforms to encourage change in the world for the better are things worth joining hands over. Beyond all the awards for on-field recognition, these off-the-field accomplishments are even more important to celebrate.
But the actual athletic awards are certainly a cool part, as well. Awards like Best Male and Female Athlete, Best Team, and Best Comeback put the accomplishments of football players, basketball players, baseball players, soccer players and all kinds of other athletes side-by-side.
So, with the idea of the ESPY's in mind, I decided to have a little fun with this topic. Since this is a draft-centric website, I created a handful of my own categories to recognize from the 2019 NFL Draft. There's no point in making a category like "Best Pick" or "Best Trade" because not only have we all expressed our opinions on those topics already, we can't exactly prove any kind of accomplishments yet.
So instead I came up with four different categories to award.
Jacobs, who was picked No. 24 overall by the Oakland Raiders, had the true blue suit with the black tie going on -- a combo I very much stan. But what puts him in this category is what he had inside the suit jacket.
Jacobs had his tailors sew an image of a rose coming out of the ground inside his suit jacket. In his own words, this was "a rose coming from concrete, because I came from nothing, and now I'm here."
Gold and black? Oh, you have my attention, sir.
Josh Allen, selected No. 7 overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars, had the all black shirt and pants with a strong gold jacket and a gold chain to match. This man was stylin' on that stage.
Does he get extra points for the baby? Judges say yes.
I don't care. I don't care. I don't care. This outfit was amazing. I don't care. I don't care.
Marquise Brown brought the fire on draft night. Not only was he the first wide receiver off the board, he was the best dressed wide out of the entire weekend. Not only was Brown's suit very clean and well matched, his chain was literally him in diamond form with an image of himself also sewn on the inside of his jacket.
And the award goes to.... Marquise Brown
There's only one nominee in this category, mainly because no one else could have come close to what Christian Wilkins did this year or maybe any year.
Wilkins is a man who wears his emotions on his sleeve. He is outgoing and expressive at all times, and the best moment of his life was certainly no exception. I'm not sure we'll ever see anyone try to shoulder bump the commissioner ever again.
And the award goes to.... Christian Wilkins
Solid, Structured. Strong
Burns showed great form on his hug, and you could feel the joy in it. It gets a big stamp of approval.
Fant got the two-for-one hug with both parents at once. Tough to do, but he pulled it off.
Ferrell gets the emotional points because he was hugging his mom while on the phone with the Raiders as he was being informed they were drafting him No. 4 overall.
He couldn't even wait to hug his mom, and if that doesn't bring a smile to your face I don't know what will.
In his second nomination, Brown's hug actually comes from Deion Sanders putting his arm around him as he was overwhelmed with emotion on stage after being drafted.
There are many different kinds of hugs that happen on draft night. This one was special, too.
And the award goes to.... Clelin Ferrell
There were a lot of great moments from draft weekend, but from the player's side, one of the best had to be the raw reaction when D.K. Metcalf got the call from the Seahawks to be drafted. When Seattle general manager John Schneider told Metcalf they were going to draft him, Metcalf was so overcome with emotion he loud and ugly cried in the best way.
It's those moments that you are just truly overwhelmed with happiness that make you love all of this.
I can't tell you how hard I smiled when I watched that video.
Throughout the second and third rounds of the NFL draft, teams often allow special guests to announce their selections live on national television. Sometimes it's military members or celebrities who might be fans of the team. But other times it's people who are less known but certainly just as inspiring and worthy of the moment.
13-year old Ravens fan Mo Gaba has been blind since he was nine months old. Throughout his young life, he's already beaten cancer four times. On Day 3 of the 2019 NFL Draft, Mo became the first person to ever announce an NFL draft pick off of a braille card, as he announced the Ravens’ fourth-round pick Ben Powers.
Similar to Gaba, Seahawks super fan Owen Church battled cancer at a young age. His initial battle with the disease began when he was just four years old. At the age of 13, he is now cancer free.
At the 47th pick in round two of the 2019 NFL Draft, Church stepped to the stage next to one of his favorite players, Seahawks legend Shaun Alexander, and announced the pick of safety Marquise Blair.
In a much more light-hearted memorable moment, McAfee stole the show when he took the stage to both announce the Indianapolis Colts' third round selection and roast the entire local Titans fan base in the same speech.
In the category of comedy for memorable moments, that one takes the cake.
And the award goes to.... ALL OF THEM (you can't pick one, each of those reasons and more are why we love draft weekend)