This year's field of finalists for the 2001 Miller Lite NFL Player of the Year award features three previous winners in Favre (1995, 1996), Kurt Warner (1999), and last year's winner Marshall Faulk (fourth consecutive year as a finalist). Rich Gannon, one of four quarterbacks up for the award this year, was also a finalist in 2000. Kordell Stewart and Michael Strahan, the lone defensive finalist, are the only newcomers to a field of veteran Miller Lite NFL Player of the Year candidates.
The six national finalists were chosen by the nomination committee, which consists of eight pro football journalists from across the country. The 2001 Miller Lite NFL Player of the Year will be selected from these six finalists by a committee of more than 200 media representatives comprised of broadcasters and print journalists from each of the 31 NFL markets.
The award will be presented the week of Super Bowl XXXVI during a press conference held at the Hyatt Regency in New Orleans on Wednesday, January 30, 2002, starting at 4:30 pm.
Since the program's inception in 1989 Miller has donated more than $1.5 million to various charities. This year, Miller will donate $130,000 to local charitable organizations through the Player of the Year program. The company awards each of the 31 team selections (as voted on by local media) $2,500 to donate to the charity of their choice. Each of the six finalists will receive $5,000 to donate to his favorite charity, with the overall winner receiving an additional $25,000 to present to the charity of his choice.