Best Cowboy (2009)

DeMarcus Ware

If his teammates would've played anywhere near his performance in 2008, the Cowboys might have lived up to their Super Bowl hype instead of pratfalling their way to 9-7. An 11th-round afterthought in the 2005 NFL Draft, Ware has blossomed and matured into one of the league's best defensive players. A stand-up linebacker who beats bigger, stronger linemen with a dazzling combo of speed and agility, Ware last season recorded 20 sacks, forced six fumbles and generally caused havoc on a defense that otherwise wholly underachieved. How good is Ware? He had a sack in 14 of last season's 16 games, was an NFL MVP candidate and was named the league's sixth-best player in a recent ESPN poll. A Cowboys star with nary an arrest, divisive romance or accidental overdose. What a concept.

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