January 18, 2013

MVP Profile: Brian Urlacher, 2005

Linebacker, Chicago Bears

Age:  27
6th season in pro football & with Bears
College: New Mexico
Height: 6’4”   Weight: 258

A versatile player in college, Urlacher was the first round draft choice of the Bears in 2000 and had an immediate impact. He was ideally suited to playing middle linebacker with his speed and tackling ability in the open field and excellent instincts. Urlacher was named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year by the Associated Press and was selected to the Pro Bowl for the first of four consecutive seasons. He was a consensus first-team All-NFL selection in 2001 and ’02.

2005 Season Summary
Appeared in all 16 games
(Bracketed numbers indicate league rank in Top 20)

Sacks – 6
Most sacks, game – 2 vs. Detroit 9/18, vs. Minnesota 10/16
Interceptions – 0
Fumble recoveries – 0
Forced fumbles – 1
Tackles – 98
Assists – 24

Postseason: 1 G (NFC Divisional playoff vs. Carolina)
Sacks – 0
Interceptions – 1
Int. return yards – 20
TD – 0

Awards & Honors:
NFL Defensive Player of the Year: AP
1st team All-NFL: AP, PFWA, Sporting News
1st team All-NFC: Pro Football Weekly
Pro Bowl

Bears went 11-5 to finish first in the NFC North while leading the NFL in fewest points allowed (202). Lost NFC Divisional playoff to Carolina Panthers (29-21).

Urlacher was again a consensus first-team All-Pro and Pro Bowl selection in 2006 as the Bears won the NFC Championship. He began to show signs of wear later in the decade and, after typically being a durable player, missed all but one game in 2009 due to a wrist injury in the opening contest. But Urlacher returned to Pro Bowl form in 2010 and ’11. Through 2012, he had accumulated 41.5 sacks and 22 interceptions and had been chosen to eight Pro Bowls.


MVP Profiles feature players who were named MVP or Player of the Year in the NFL, AAFC (1946-49), AFL (1960-69), WFL (1974), or USFL (1983-85) by a recognized organization (Associated Press, Pro Football Writers Association, Newspaper Enterprise Association, United Press International, The Sporting News, Maxwell Club – Bert Bell Award, or the league itself). Also includes Associated Press NFL Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year.