It's been a remarkable year for Brandon Marshall and Danny Trevathan. After both players underwent offsesaon surgeries, and missed all of organized team activities, they received the green light in training camp and hit it with a vengeneance.
“We pushed each other," Marshall said Saturday. "I think we pushed each other a lot because I would see him, how he was doing, and if he was ahead of me I felt like in his progression, I would try to exceed that. I think he did the same thing. Sometimes we would talk because we’d have down days where my foot was hurt and his knees were hurt, but we’d talk to each other and we’d say, ‘Let’s just push through. Let’s push through. Let’s get through this and let’s work hard so we can be the best duo in the league.’”
Champing at the bit, the Denver Broncos were excited to get them both on the field together in Wade Phillips' 3-4 defensive scheme, but whether or not they could hold up to the wear and tear of the season-long grind, coming off significant injuries, remained to be seen.
With a full 16-game season under their belt, the fruits of Marshall and Trevathan's season are apparent. Both players exceeded the 100-tackle mark and played key roles in the Broncos finishing the season as the NFL's No. 1 defense. Without these two at ILB, the Broncos defense wouldn't be anywhere near as formidable, especially stopping the run.
For their efforts, the Broncos have named Marshall and Trevathan the 2015 Ed Block Courage Award recipients. The Ed Block Courage Award is named in honor of Ed Block, the former athletic trainer of the Baltimore Colts, who was an innovator in his field and a respected humanitarian. Recipients of the Ed Block award are voted on by their teammates. They look for players who display exceptional courage, great character and inspiring effort.
Although Trevathan finished the season as the team's leading tackler, the competition between he and Marshall for the title was good natured, but serious all the same.
“It was more of a little joke between us, but, at the same time, we both are competitors," Trevathan said. "We knew we just had to win as many games as we could. It was a little side-bit, but I knew I was going to win the tackle-title. I told him in coverage, he has that. He’s probably the better coverage guy. Tackling, he’s a head hunter. I enjoyed it and it brought out the best in me this year. He’s one of the premier players that I’ve been around. I’ve learned from him and also grew with [him]. That’s something that I’ll never forget. I’ll carry it on as long as I play football.”
“That’s awesome," head coach Gary Kubiak said Saturday. "What they’ve both been through, [Head Athletic Trainer Steve] Greek [Antonopulos] needs a piece of that award, too. Throughout the course of the offseason, the plan that Greek had in place to get those guys to the season and the job that they did—they’ve been there every snap this year and played extremely well. I’ve been around that award. That’s a very prestigious award. To have two players that were that close and that deserving is something special. I’m proud of both of them.”
Brandon Marshall and Danny Trevathan certainly exemplify courage. And for two guys who were deserving of the Pro Bowl but were not elected, it's a nice consolation prize to be honored in this way by their teammates.
Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.
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