Darren Waller of the Raiders emerged to become one of the best young tight ends in the NFL this season. Now he is the team’s inaugural nominee for a new league award.
Waller is among 32 NFL players under consideration for the Anything But Ordinary Player of the Year award, which honors players with eclectic and inspiring off-field interests.
Waller, the grandson of legendary jazz musician Fats Waller, is an aspiring recording artist with two albums to his credit. His ambition to continue the family legacy is a compelling component to his nomination.
Waller finished his first full season with the Raiders with 90 catches for 1,145 yards and three touchdowns.
The award will be presented at the NFL Honors award show on Feb. 1. The show, which has become a highlight of Super Bowl week, also recognizes the NFL Most Valuable Player, the Man of the Year award and the latest inductees of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Josh Jacobs, the Raiders’ record-breaking running back, is the favorite to win the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award, and defensive end Maxx Crosby is in the running for Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.
The winner of the Anything But Ordinary Player of the Year award will be determined by an online fan vote that runs Jan. 10-20 at anythingbutordinaryaward.com.