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Beasley named NFL 2016 Most Improved Player of the Year by PFWA

Atlanta linebacker Vic Beasley, Jr., who led the NFL in sacks, was selected as the 2016 NFL Most Improved Player of the Year in voting conducted by the Professional Football Writers of America (PFWA).

Jordy Nelson, who had a season ending knee injury in the 2015 preseason, was selected the 2016 NFL Comeback Player of the Year in the same release.

As a rookie in 2015, Beasley started all 16 games and had four sacks, one interception, two forced fumbles, two passes defended and 27 total tackles. This season, he led the NFL with 15.5 sacks to go with 15 quarterback hits, 10 tackles for loss, six forced fumbles and 39 tackles on the way to PFWA All-NFL and All-NFC honors at outside linebacker. His 15.5 sacks were the second-most in a season in Falcons history, and he had four games with two or more sacks. Beasley became the 10th player in NFL history to post at least three sacks and return a fumble recovery for a touchdown in the same game at Los Angeles in Week 14. He had 3.5 sacks in the Falcons’ game at Denver. He was the NFC Defensive Player of the Month for December after posting six sacks and two forced fumbles.

Beasley, who played locally at Adairsville High School and for Clemson University, is the first member of the Atlanta Falcons to receive Most Improved Player of the Year honors.

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