Steelers News

Najee Harris Wins Joe Greene Award For Steelers’ Top Rookie

Najee Harris has been awarded the Joe Greene Award, given annually to the top Pittsburgh Steelers’ rookie as voted on by his teammates. As we wrote earlier, Cam Heyward took home The Chief Award to the player who best interacts with the media.

Harris is an unsurprising choice for the award. The team’s first-round pick taken 24th overall, Harris has set several Steelers’ rookie records this season. His 1,172 yards are the most by a rookie runner, breaking Franco Harris’ nearly 50-year old mark. The 188 yards Harris ran for in Monday night’s win over the Cleveland Browns is a rookie single-game record. He also made an impact in the pass game. His 70 receptions this season are also the most by a Steelers’ rookie.

On the season, Harris has carried the ball 296 times, averaging 4.0 yards per carry. His 366 touches lead the NFL, and if he maintains that lead through the final week of the season, he’ll be the first rookie to lead the league in touches since LaDainian Tomlinson did so in 2001.

Harris has shown great conditioning, durability, ball security, and an overall well-rounded game this season. While some can debate the value of a first-round running back, no one can debate Harris’ talent or ability, every yard earned behind a rebuilding offensive line.

Harris is the fourth true running back to win the award, joining Warren Williams in 1988, Bam Morris in 1994, and Le’Veon Bell in 2013. Here’s the list of past winners since the award was created in 1984.

Joe Greene Great Performance Award Winners:
1984 WR Louis Lipps
1985 P Harry Newsome
1986 LB Anthony Henton
1987 CB Delton Hall
1988 RB Warren Williams
1989 SS Carnell Lake
1990 TE Eric Green
1991 TE Adrian Cooper
1992 FS Darren Perry
1993 LB Chad Brown
1994 RB Bam Morris
1995 QB Kordell Stewart
1996 FB Jon Witman
1997 CB Chad Scott
1998 OG Alan Faneca
1999 WR Troy Edwards
2000 FB Dan Kreider
2001 LB Kendrell Bell
2002 OG Kendall Simmons
2003 S Troy Polamalu
2004 QB Ben Roethlisberger
2005 TE Heath Miller
2006 WR Santonio Holmes
2007 P Daniel Sepulveda
2008 LB Patrick Bailey
2009 WR Mike Wallace
2010 C Maurkice Pouncey
2011 OT Marcus Gilbert
2012 OT Mike Adams
2013 RB Le’Veon Bell
2014 WR Martavis Bryant
2015 LB Bud Dupree
2016 S Sean Davis
2017 WR JuJu Smith-Schuster
2018 S Terrell Edmunds
2019 LB Devin Bush
2020 WR Chase Claypool
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