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Unsung Hero: Barwinning

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This guy is all kinds of fired of up for the seventh unsung hero of the 2011 season.
This guy is all kinds of fired of up for the seventh unsung hero of the 2011 season.

Your Houston Texans are not being very considerate to me lately. All of these double-digit victories sure are making it hard to identify an unsung hero. How can anyone be unsung in a 37-9 victory? How can you find that unnoticed player on a 7-3 team that leads the entire AFC?

I was able to find one player whose play went somewhat unnoticed. We will get to him after the jump, but I will use this pre-jump space to soapbox a little bit.

While a great many of us are thinking that our very own may not play in the game, the Pro Bowl team is still something that players like to be voted onto. Your Houston Texans have players worthy of being voted there. So on behalf of Matt Schaub, Arian Foster, Ben Tate, Owen Daniels, Duane Brown, Chris Myers, Antonio Smith, J.J. Watt, Brian Cushing, Johnathan Joseph, and possibly Brett Hartmann and Brooks Reed, I urge you all to go out and vote here. Let's try and stuff the ballot with these great Texans who have been among the best at their individual positions in the AFC.

Heading into this 2011 season, Connor Barwin drew some concern about his ability to A) come back from last season's ankle injury and B) make the move from defensive end to linebacker. Despite some flashes of brilliance, namely notching sacks off All-Pro tackles Jake Long and Joe Thomas, Barwin has not played as consistently as one would hope - disappearing in the pass rush at times, even though he had slid into Mario Williams' spot as the "top guy," so to speak.

Still, Barwin's coming off, what I felt, was one of his better games of the season. He racked up 1.5 sacks and appeared to be coming off the edge quite well throughout the entire game. Furthermore, Barwin's game helped him to surpass all of his totals from that rookie season of his - with 22 tackles, 4.5 sacks, and five passes defensed through ten games.

For Connor Barwin, yesterday was not only a day of good, impactful defense that went unnoticed (or rather overshadowed), but he continues to show that he has bounced back from a gruesome injury without losing a step. For all of that, we salute Connor Barwin as an unsung hero and wish him a nice week off.

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