Defensive end Mario Williams was named the NFL Alumni Defensive Lineman of the Year on Monday, joining teammates Jerome Mathis (2005) and Andre Johnson (2006) as prior Texans to receive the award.
The Texans and Chicago Bears hold the distinction of having a player honored over each of the last three seasons. Williams will be honored at a banquet with the other 2007 recipients at the 26th annual Player of the Year Awards Dinner, to be held Friday, Feb. 1 at the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Gainey Ranch in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Williams finished the season with 59 tackles, 14 sacks for 82.5 yards, two forced fumbles, one pass defensed and one fumble recovery that he returned for a 38-yard touchdown. Williams finished tied for third in the NFL and set a franchise record with 14 sacks, accounting for 45.2 percent of the Texans' sacks, the highest percentage of team sacks in the NFL.
Williams recorded a sack in six straight games from Nov. 18 – Dec. 23. In those six games, Williams had 10 sacks, the most by any player over a six-game stretch this season. He is also the only player in the NFL to record a sack in six consecutive games. Williams' eight sacks gave him the most sacks in the month of December in the NFL. Williams was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week in Week 1 as well as in Week 15.
During the awards ceremony, each honoree will receive his NFL Alumni Player of the Year award from a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame who once played the same position. The Don Shula Coach of the Year Award will be presented by the legendary coach Don Shula.