Tuesday, 28 August 2012 17:43

2012 GYFL MVP!!!

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2012 GYFL MVP Eric Burrell and his father Scott pose for the photo! 2012 GYFL MVP Eric Burrell and his father Scott pose for the photo!

The Finalists for the 2012 "Grassroots Andy" Award for the Most Valuable Player of the league read like a who's who of elite 8th grade football players.  Each one of these student athletes were sensational in the 2012 season and each were worthy of winning the most prestigious award that the GYFL offers.

Here is the list of finalists:  Abdul Adamsd (Howard County Stars), Damien Jones (Charles County Heat), Eric Burrell (Howard County Stars), Steven Smothers (Baltimore Metro Stallions), Azariah Bratto-Bey (Baltimore Metro Stallions), Adrian Platt (Howard County Stars), and DeMartez "Petey" Thomas (Southern MD Wildcats).

Abdul Adams: Just a phenomenal athlete.  He did it all for the GYFL Champion Stars.  He was an elite running back who was one of the leading rushers in the league, even while splitting carries with another finalist Adrian Platt.  As a runner, he is fast and powerful.  Doesn't waste a lot of time dancing.  He ran with great body lean, read his holes quickly, made one cut and was downhill all season long.  Great speed and tenacity combined with excellent size.  He was doubly as effective as a defender.  He was a sure tackler from his LB/Safety position.  He caused timely turnovers and converted them to points for his team.  He was also a tenacious return man who consistently gave the Stars great field position.  Adams was the MVP of the Championship game and is taking his talents to Wilson HS, where he will be playing varsity as a freshman.  Adams was named offensive player of the year for the 2012 season.

Damien Jones: This kid is just an animal on the field.  He runs like a madman with power and determination.  He has great speed, but his combination of power and speed was unmatched in the league this year.  He was like a runaway freight train coming through the hole and was one of the top rushers in the league.  Another kid who does very little dancing in the hole.  As a safety, he was one of the most fierce hitters in the league this year.  He was compared to the late Sean Taylor by some who believed he was the best offensive and defensive player in the league.  He will play varsity as a freshman at St. Mary's Ryken this year.  He was named most outstanding running back for the 2012 season.

Steven Smothers: Purely electrifying athlete that is the defeinition of game breaker.  Nicknamed him "Optimus Prime" because when he puts on his uniform, he transforms into a machine.  Simply unguargable as a reciever and kick returner.  Had several game breaking catches and returns for the Stallions this summer.  Very difficult to beat as a corner back with his great instincts and closing speed.  Not afraid to come up and make tackles in the open field.  Will be special at the next level.  Will play varsity for Franklin this fall.

Azariah Bratton-Bey: We call him the Ninja and words can't describe the type of talent this kid has.  Small in stature, but the biggest heart that you will ever see.  As a running back, he just refuses to be tackled by the first or second defender.  He is just relentless with the ball.  He has quick feet, great speed and vision.  He runs so low to the ground that he is hard to even see as a defender and when you finally do see him, he is past you.  You have to see him on film to believe him.  Just a pure winner who excelled on both sides of the ball.  Will play varsity for Millford Mill this fall.

Adrian Platt: Bey and Platt are two of the most unique backs that played in the league this year.  Neither are very big.  Platt has the heart of a lion.  He is also low to ground but his vision is incredible and he will not go down easily.  Has great speed, and is a remarkable return man.  Has all the tools to be a great running back at the next level.  Will take his considerable talents to Landon school in the fall.  He is another kid who excelled as an undersized LB, but will be a great DB at the next level.

DeMartez "Petey" Thomas:  Can't say enough about this kid.  Not big by any stretch of the imagination, but his heart is as big as they come.  Played on a team that did not win a game in two years, but every game he showed up ready to play.  He played every snap on offense and every snap on defense like it was his last.  Hands down the leading tackler in the league this year.  There were games when he had 16 tackles or more.  As a running back he would always get that extra yard whether he had blocking or not.  Has the ability to be a productive runner at the next level, but it is at the LB position that he excels.  Won the award for Defensive Player of the Year.  Will take his considerable talents to St. Mary's Ryken in the fall.  Remarkable that he could be in the running for an award this prestigious on a team that did not win one game.

Eric Burrell: Burrell is simply "The Definition" of a football player.  Consequently, we call him "The Definition."  He was not the best offensive player, according to the Offensive Player of the Year award going to his teammate.  He was not the best defensive player, according to the Defensive Player of the Year award going to someone else.  He did not even win an award for most outstanding player at his position.  So how in the world can he be the GYFL Most Valuable Player and win the 1st ever Grassroots Andy Award?  Quite simply, he is the best football player that we have seen in quite some time.  As a reciever, he didn't lead the league in receptions.  His team did not throw a lot.  But, everytime they did throw the ball his way he made circus catches to win football games.  As a LB, he did not lead the league in tackles.  He had a number of good football players on his team and they shared the load.  But, everytime they needed a big stop to win a football game, it was Burrell who was making the stop.  He was a ferocious tackler and unquestioned leader of a championship defense.  He was a clutch reciever who could always be depended on.  He was a kid that did not even need Grassroots to be honest!  He had already made a name for himself, but he was committed to coming out and proving that he was the best of the best.  He did just that.  He was the kicker, the punter, and the leader of the HC Stars.  He is a great football player who will take his undeniable talents to McDonogh HS where he will play varsity in the fall and leave his mark on the the game.

Ladies and Gentlemen........  Your 2012 GYFL Player of the Year and winner of the first ever Grassroots Andy Award is Mr. Eric Burrell from the Howard County Stars!

Congratulations young man.  Represent the GYFL well and don't forget us on your way to the top.  Stay humble, always put God first, listen to your father, and STAY THIRSTY MY FRIEND!!!!!

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