Tomlinson and Williams capture multiple awards

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Oct 14, 2005

Pro Bowl running back LaDainian Tomlinson has been chosen as the Chargers’ Most Valuable Player and co-Offensive Player of the Year. It is his third MVP award and fourth offensive player of the year award. He’s the team’s leading rusher with 1,370 yards and 17 touchdowns and has scored a total of 19 touchdowns, including two receiving, tying Chuck Muncie’s single-season team record. Tomlinson also threw three touchdown passes this season.

Tomlinson shared Offensive Player of the Year honors with Pro Bowl tight end Antonio Gates, the team’s leading receiver with 86 catches for 1,078 yards and 10 touchdowns. It’s the second-consecutive year that Gates has won the award. The offensive player(s) of the year receive the Rodney Culver Memorial Award in honor of the late running back who died along with his wife, Karen, in the 1996 ValuJet plane crash in the Florida Everglades.

Pro Bowl defensive tackle Jamal Williams was selected as Defensive Player of the Year and Lineman of the Year for the second year in a row. He leads the team with seven tackles for loss and his 45 total tackles are tied for the most on the team among defensive linemen. Williams, who was voted in to the Pro Bowl for the first time in his career, is the anchor of San Diego’s top-ranked run defense. The defensive player of the year receives the David Griggs Memorial Award in honor of the former outside linebacker who was killed in a single-car accident in June, 1995 in Davie, Florida.

The 2005 Special Teams Player of the Year is wide receiver Kassim Osgood. Before suffering a season-ending pectoral injury during the Chargers’ game against Oakland on Dec. 4, Osgood had been the team’s leading tackler with 19 stops on special teams. It’s his first-career special teams award.

The Most Inspirational Player Award went to linebacker Randall Godfrey. The 10-year veteran, who has announced his intentions to retire after the season, has played with a heavy heart after the death of his younger sister, Deidre Miller, in early November. He’s the team’s second-leading tackler with 72 stops on the season. The most inspirational player receives the Emil Karas Memorial Award, in honor of the former three-time AFL all-star linebacker who died of stomach cancer after his retirement from the NFL in 1974. Karas also worked for the Chargers in the front office as director of promotions before his passing.

All of the team awards are voted on by the players.