Safety and special teams standout DeAndre Houston-Carson has been selected as the Bears' nominee for the ninth annual Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award, which recognizes NFL players who exemplify outstanding sportsmanship on the field. Each NFL team nominates one player for the honor.
The award was created in 2014 in honor of the late founding owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pro Football Hall of Famer Art Rooney Sr. It is presented each year to an NFL player who best demonstrates the qualities of on-field sportsmanship, including fair play, respect for the game and opponents, and integrity in competition.
A respected team leader, Houston-Carson has appeared in 88 games over seven seasons since being selected by the Bears in the sixth round of the 2016 draft out of William & Mary. He has performed at a high level throughout his career on special teams and has also produced impact plays on defense when called upon.
A panel of former players comprised of Warrick Dunn, Larry Fitzgerald, Curtis Martin and Leonard Wheeler will select eight finalists (four in the NFC and four in the AFC) from the 32 nominees for the honor.
The eight finalists will be listed on the Pro Bowl ballot under the NFL Sportsmanship Award category when players vote in December. From the eight finalists, each team's players will submit a consensus vote of their choice for the winner. As with Pro Bowl voting, a team cannot vote for its own player.
The winner will be announced as part of NFL Honors Feb. 9, the Thursday before the Super Bowl. He will receive a $25,000 donation from the NFL Foundation to a charity of his choice.
Past recipients of the Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award include Fitzgerald (2014), Raiders defensive back Charles Woodson (2015), Colts running back Frank Gore (2016), Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly (2017), Saints quarterback Drew Brees (2018), Washington running back Adrian Peterson (2019), Panthers quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (2020) and Patriots receiver Matthew Slater (2021).