MVP: Arian Foster, Houston Texans
Houston's 4-3 record is due mainly in part because of Foster's 737 rushing yards (second in league) and seven TDs (second in league as well). Foster, on just 130 carries, has allowed Houston's eighth-best rushing attack to keep the offense balanced. Despite not leading the league in yards, there's no doubt Foster is having a better season than the other runners out there, including the likes of Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson.
Offensive Player (other than Foster): Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers
In order to spread out the wealth, I have left Foster out of the running for "offensive player." Despite San Diego's dismal 3-5 record in the AFC West, it's clear that Rivers has done all he can to win games. Rivers is leading the league's top offense (when it comes to total yards at least). In fact, the team has gained nearly 500 yards more than the second-best Oakland Raiders. Rivers has been nothing but great this season and I'm sure he'd love it if his supporting cast stepped their game up a bit.
Defensive Player: Clay Matthews, Green Bay Packers
He hasn't exactly been an all-around threat so far this season like he usually is, but his league-leading 9.5 sacks are enough to intimidate even the elite quarterbacks of today. One of the best pass-rushing linebackers out there, Matthews is just half a sack shy of tying his total from last season (his rookie year), and is just 11 tackles shy of tying his 36 total from last year as well. This is a well-deserved award for Mr. Matthews. (Note: DeAngelo Hall, and his 6 INTs, were a very close second place).
Offensive Rookie: Sam Bradford, St. Louis Rams
The one thing Bradford hasn't done well this season is win on the road, which is understandable because that can be tough for veterans at times, too. St. Louis is in second place in the West because of his leadership. Despite limited weapons in the passing game, Bradford has made the most of his opportunity, passing for 209 yards/game and 11 TDs. If he can win a couple games on the road he'd be in good shape to make a run.
Defensive Rookie: Ndamukong Suh, Detroit Lions
Suh leads all defensive tackles in tackling (22 solo, five assists) and has recorded 6.5 sacks for the Lions defense this season, good enough for a tie for eighth-most. He has also picked off a pass this season and even returned a fumble 20 yards for his first career touchdown last week against the Redskins to seal the team's second victory.
Coach: Tom Cable, Oakland Raiders
As odd as this may sound, I felt obligated to throw Cable's name out there simply because of the fact that the Raiders have managed to make it to .500 despite not having a flat-out No. 1 quarterback all season. Darren McFadden and the running game have kept Oakland in games, and has made Cable look better. But, looking at the remaining schedule, the Raiders certainly have a chance at making a run. Not to mention they've really only been blown out once, and that was week one against the Titans.
Surprise Team: Chiefs/Bucs
I am awarding this one to two different teams because it was just too hard to decide on one of them. Both teams currently sit atop it's respective division with a 5-2 record (Bucs are tied with Atlanta). But, unlike Kansas City, Tampa Bay has allowed more points than they have scored, meaning I may have to give the Chiefs the edge despite the fact that Tampa is playing in a tougher division.
Game: Week Seven, Giants def. Cowboys 41-35
Ah, the game that all Cowboys fans wish to forget. Not only did they lose Tony Romo indefinitely after suffering a shoulder injury, but they also lost a heartbreaker to a division rival in their own doghouse. After replacing Romo, Jon Kitna threw for 187 yards and two TDs, but Dallas' defense couldn't back him up despite his three INTs. Manning's 306 yards and four TDs were just enough to come out a winner in the end. Game's like this one are always fun to watch.
Let's hope the second half of the season is at least as good, if not better, than the first half of play.
Arian Foster: AP Photo/Dave Einsel
Clay Matthews: AP Photo/Morry Gash
Ndamukong Suh: AP Photo/Paul Sancya
Jamaal Charles: AP Photo/Ed Zurga