Maiocco: An NFL Journalist's Dilemma

May 10, 2010, 10:24 pm
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May 10, 2010MAIOCCO ARCHIVE49ERS PAGE 49ERS VIDEO

Matt Maiocco
CSNBayArea.com
Brian Cushing got my vote as NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year on Jan. 3 when I sent in my ballot for The Associated Press Awards.

There really wasnt much for me to consider. The Houston Texans outside linebacker collected 133 tackles with four sacks, four interceptions and two forced fumbles. In my mind, he was the easy choice for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.

But after Cushing's violation of the NFL's performance-enhancing drug policy and his admission that he took a "nonsteroidal" banned substance, the AP is giving voters, such as myself, an opportunity to change our votes.

I received notice from The AP just moments ago that there would be a re-vote of the award. There will also be a re-vote of the outside linebacker position for the All-Pro team. Cushing was a second-team All-Pro honoree. Because I did not vote for Cushing as an All-Pro, this changes nothing for me.

It would be easy to take the high-and-mighty approach and change my Defensive Rookie of the Year vote. But are we to pretend that his rookie season did not happen? I just checked Cushings bio on NFL.com, and he is still credited with all those stats from the 2009 season.

I have until Wednesday to turn in a new ballot, and I have yet to decide how Im going to handle this. What do you think I should do?