There was a lot of debate up in the air on whether T.J. Watt, Myles Garrett, or Micah Parsons should be the defensive player of the year in the NFL in 2021. The Cleveland Browns and the Pittsburgh Steelers squared off on Monday night football and T.J. Watt sacked Baker Mayfield four times in a 26-14 win for Pittsburgh over Cleveland.
Garrett is a great talent for the Browns, but he disappeared in big spots this season. As great as Parsons will be for the Dallas Cowboys, he is not there just yet.
T.J. Watt is just as good as his brother J.J. Watt was. T.J. Watt should be the defensive player of the year. When the Pittsburgh Steelers defense doesn’t have him, it is a complete train wreck. Watt is just one sack behind Michael Strahan (22.5 sacks record in 2002, NYG) for tying the record. T.J. Watt is currently at 21.5 sacks and he missed two games this year due to injury.
A lot of people were saying he should have won it two years ago. However, Pittsburgh Steelers have every right to be upset if he doesn’t win this year. The race was really close until everyone saw what T.J. Watt did in primetime. He was in Baker Mayfield’s kitchen all night long and the Cleveland Browns usually have a pretty good offensive line.
Myles Garrett was not in Ben Roethlisberger’s kitchen at all really. This was potentially Ben Roethlisberger’s final game at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, because he is contemplating retirement.
Even though this night was potentially about Ben Roethlisberger and the home fans cheering him on for one last time, T.J. Watt was also the main story of Monday night football for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Ben Roethlisberger and Pittsburgh still have an outside shot at the AFC playoffs as a wild card team.
The Pittsburgh Steelers (8-7-1) season finale will be on the road on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens (8-8).
The Cleveland Browns (7-9) season finale will be at home on Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals (10-6).
-Glenn Kaplan, 12oz Sports Contributor, Live Monday’s at 3 p.m. ET & Thursday at 11 a.m. ET on 12oz Sports
Photo Credit: Twitter @steelers