Sheldon Richardson Named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year

Sheldon Richardson Named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year

By DAVID MORRISON

Former College of the Sequoias defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson was named the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year on Saturday by the Associated Press, after logging 78 tackles and 3.5 sacks during his rookie season with the New York Jets.

Richardson, who was the 13th overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, received 23 votes to beat out Buffalo Bills linebacker Kiko Alonso (19 votes).

The 6-foot-3, 294-pound St. Louis native was also the first Jets defensive lineman to score an offensive touchdown and the first NFL defensive lineman to score two rushing touchdowns in the same season since William "The Refrigerator" Perry did it for the Chicago Bears in 1985.

Richardson was a five-star recruit who signed with Missouri out of Gateway Tech in 2009, but spent two years at College of the Sequoias in Visalia, Calif., before returning to Missouri in 2011.

He was a first-team All-SEC performer according to the AP as a redshirt junior in 2012 and a second-team coaches' selection, totaling 75 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss and 4.0 sacks for the Tigers.

Richardson is the sixth Missouri player to go in the first round of the NFL Draft since 2009.

Watch Richardson styling backstage at Saturday's NFL Honors awards here.

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