Next week, the San Francisco 49ers will hand out their team awards. There are a lot of notable awards, most of which we can’t predict because a lot of them have to do with inside-the-locker-room stuff, as well as off-field things that we just aren’t aware of. But one is the Bill Walsh Award, given annually to the team’s most valuable player.
Established in 2004 to honor former 49ers coach Bill Walsh, the award is voted on by coaches only and is given to the player most deserving of honor for his “outstanding individual annual performance.” The 49ers have a lot of team awards, some of which are also voted on by players, but this isn’t one of them.
One has to wonder if Jimmy Garoppolo is the team MVP, or if the 49ers feel it should go elsewhere. Maybe they believe it should go to someone who has played more than Garoppolo, but it’s not exactly a perfect argument. He’s ignited a spark in that locker room like never before.
As far as the best player on the team, then Robbie Gould has to be in that discussion. He’s been perfect, or as close to perfect as can be. The 49ers gave the award to a kicker in 2015, when they awarded it to Phil Dawson.
Joe Staley received the award last year, the first time he’s received it, surprisingly. I could see him again this year, but there are probably more deserving players on the defensive side of the ball, namely Reuben Foster and DeForest Buckner.
My guess is Garoppolo gets it, but if he doesn’t, then Gould will get the award, with Buckner being the third candidate from where I’m standing. What do ya’ll think? For a full list of 49ers team awards, head over here.