The NFL has announced that beginning this season, they will be handing out an award to the player who records the most QB sacks. The award will appropriately named for the recently deceased HOF DE Deacon Jones, who was the first player to coin the term some 40 some-odd years ago. Sacks were not an official stat until 1982, but it is estimated that he had 194 1/2 during his career (1961-74), which would place him third all-time behind Bruce Smith and Reggie White.
Estimates also show that Jones had 26 sacks in 1967 and 24 sacks in 1968. Both are higher than the current NFL single-season record of 22 1/2 set by the Giants’ Michael Strahan in 2001.
From the NFL:
The award will be featured annually on NFL Honors, the league’s primetime awards event held the night before the Super Bowl.
“Deacon Jones was an icon among icons,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “Even with his fellow Hall of Famers, Deacon Jones held a special status. He was a hard-charging football player and the original sack artist who coined the term. He is warmly regarded by his peers not only as one of the greatest players in NFL history but also for his tremendous influence and sense of humor. This award will ensure that players, coaches, fans and the media will remember the impact that Deacon had on all of us and know that he represents unique qualities deserving of this kind of honor.”
Deacon Jones died on June 3 at the age of 74. One of the greatest defensive players in NFL history, Jones was a fixture at defensive end from 1961-74 with the Rams, Chargers and Redskins, earning unanimous all-league honors in five consecutive seasons. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1980.