Take a deep breath, America. Come out of your panic rooms. Houston Texans linebacker Brian Cushing has won an Associated Press revote and will keep his NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year award, despite flunking a performance-enhancing drug test last September.
Phew. Our long national nightmare is over.
Cushing is a cheat. Unless he's the undeserving target of a retroactive witch hunt. Wherever you stand on his story, this much is certain: you have a stance. Because nothing -- nothing -- is more important, more memorable or more worth barrels of newsprint and hours of airtime than the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Award. It's like the Super Bowl, the Oscars, the presidential election and the National Spelling Bee rolled into one. Plus "American Idol."
Indeed, to celebrate the monumental significance of the award -- and of the Cushing decision, one that is sure to have a far-reaching, long-lasting impact, like Brown vs. Board of Education, only with more wrap-tackling -- Page 2 presents a quick quiz on Rookie of the Year history:
1. Who was the 1970 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year?
(a) Mel Blount
(b) Jake Scott
(c) Bruce Taylor
2. Who was the 1983 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year?
(a) Darrell Green
(b) Richard Dent
(c) Vernon Leroy Maxwell
3. Who was the 1985 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year?
(a) Bruce Smith
(b) Kevin Greene
(c) Duane Bickett
4. Who was the 1991 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year?
(a) Bryan Cox
(b) Aeneas Williams
(c) Mike Croel
5. Who was the 2001 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year?
(a) Adrian Wilson
(b) Richard Seymour
(c) Kendrell Bell
EXTRA CREDIT: Who was the 1985 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year?
(a) Jerry Rice
(b) Andre Reed
(c) Eddie Brown
Answer Key: All answers are "c."