Peppers falls short; Lamar Jackson Wins 2016 Heisman Trophy

Jabrill Peppers himself had zero expectations at winning the heisman trophy, felt that either Lamar Jackson or Deshaun Watson deserved it over him, and the other finalists. 

Peppers finished the heisman voting in dead last of the finalists, 5th place. 

As Michigan fans await to December 30th to watch the Wolverines battle it out against Florida State in Miami for the Orange Bowl; one thought comes to mind that involves curiously of Jabrill’s decision to either enter the draft, or stay at Michigan. 

He has stated already that he has a “decision to make” when asked about the situation. 

Michigan and Peppers falling short of a heisman trophy and a playoff berth, or even a Big Ten championship game berth; projected to be a top 10 NFL draft pick, redemption would have to run deep in order for the star linebacker to return to Michigan. 

Peppers: I don’t think I should (Win the Heisman)

On Friday, Michigan’s heisman finalist, Jabrill Peppers, was asked about his chances at winning the heisman trophy on Saturday. As humble as ever, Peppers responded with a statement that will make you love him even more: 

“Quite frankly, I don’t think I should (win), there are a lot of other guys here who are more qualified.”

He went onto say: “I’m just happy I’m here with the likes of the guys who are finalists. I’m going to enjoy every moment of it.”

The one reason behind the star linebacker’s presence in New York this weekend is far beyond his defensive efforts; it’s all about his versatility which allows him to return punts, kicks, and often enough, take offensive snaps. 

Jabrill also stated that he wouldn’t even vote for himself if he had the chance: “I’d vote for either Lamar or Deshaun.”

Jabrill has been utilized at 15 different positions, and he played in 933 snaps this regular season for the #6 ranked Wolverines. 

Peppers One of Five Heisman Finalists 


The final five heisman trophy finalists are as followed: 

Lamar Jackson, QB (Louisville), Baker Mayfield, QB (Oklahoma), Jabrill Peppers, LB (Michigan), Deshaun Watson, QB (Clemson), and Dede Westbrook, WR (Oklahoma).

Peppers is a primarily defensive player who sees offensive touches nearly every game; similar to 1997 Michigan heisman winner, Charles Woodson. 

If Peppers was awarded the heisman trophy, the star linebacker could add that to an already large list of awards received for his performances from the 2016 regular season. 

Jabrill has a chance to become the 4th heisman trophy winner at Michigan. 

The last wide receiver to win the award was Desmond Howard for Michigan in 1991. 

Big Ten Hardware for Peppers

As expected; do-everything Michigan star linebacker Jabrill Peppers finished his redshirt sophomore regular season with an award, or two…or three to be exact.

Peppers earned three individual awards: the Nagurski-Woodson defensive player of the year, the Rodgers-Dwight Return Specialist of the year, and the Butkus-Fitzgerald linebacker of the year award.

“It definitely means a lot, I definitely put the work in and it’s great to be rewarded,” Peppers on his Big Ten Network broadcast interview Tuesday night. The redshirt sophomore is the first player to win three individual awards all in one season in Big Ten history.

Peppers accounted for 72 tackles, 16 for loss, and 4 sacks. Tied for second leading tackler for Michigan. The linebacker recorded his first collegiate INT against the Buckeyes last Saturday. He led the Big Ten in punt return yards per attempt at 14.8, and third in kickoff yardage per game at 26.

The Wolverine superstar was also named one of five finalists for the Walter Camp Player of the Year award. Along with quarterbacks: Jake Browning (Washington), Lamar Jackson (Louisville), Deshaun Watson (Clemson), and defensive lineman Jonathan Allen (Alabama).

Jabrill was far from being the only one to receive all conference honors for the Michigan defensive unit, as you will see in the graphic below per @CoachJim4UM on twitter:

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Michigan will prepare for the chips to fall where they will fall in the following weekend as they can only hope for a Colorado win in the PAC 12 championship game over Washington, and a Virginia Tech win over Clemson in the ACC championship in order to open up the playoff door for the Wolverines.