Hardest Working Man  

 

Larry Fitzgerald is biggest bird in Cardinals' historic start

  • By Jim Reineking NFL.com
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These guys might not exactly be carrying a lunch pail to the stadium each week, but they did bring a blue-collar, working-man approach to Week 3. Take a look at all the nominees, then vote in the poll at the bottom of the right column for your choice for the Hardest-Working Man.

Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals

A week after being held to one catch for four yards, Fitzgerald returned to dominance in a 27-6 rout of the Eagles that helped the Cardinals improve to 3-0 for the first time since 1974. Of course, the team was the St. Louis Cardinals back then and that was also nine years before Fitzgerald was even born. Fitzgerald had nine catches for 144 yards and a touchdown to help the Cardinals get off to that historic start. Fitzgerald now has 707 career receptions and became the youngest player in NFL history (29 years, 23 days) to reach the 700-catch mark. He surpassed Jason Witten's previous record (30 years, 133 days) by more than a year.


Torrey Smith, Baltimore Ravens

Playing just 20 hours after his brother lost his life less than two weeks short of his 20th birthday, Smith had Ravens coach John Harbaugh's blessing to take Sunday night's game against the New England Patriots off. Instead, Smith -- playing with a heavy heart -- caught six passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns. That performance helped the Ravens secure a crucial early season 31-30 victory over another perceived AFC contender.


Ryan Succop, Kansas City Chiefs

Succop -- Mr. Irrelevant in the 2009 NFL Draft -- hit a career-high six field goals as the Chiefs collected a critical road win against the New Orleans Saints. That six-pack of three-pointers included a 43-yard field goal to force overtime and a 31-yarder to win in overtime. The Chiefs earned a 27-24 win by scoring just one touchdown.


Tim Tebow, New York Jets

It takes a rare athlete to serve as both the backup quarterback and also play on special teams as a protector on punts. Tebow is that rare athlete, and successfully executed fake punt by Tebow helped the Jets extend their first scoring drive in a 23-20 overtime win over the Miami Dolphins.


Blair Walsh, Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings got big contributions from a number of players to pull off a shocking 24-13 win over the San Francisco 49ers. Walsh only made one field goal, but it was a milestone kick. Walsh kicked a 52-yard field goal in the Week 3 win. Walsh also had a 51-yard field goal in a Week 2 loss to the Indianapolis Colts and a 55-yarder in a Week 1 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. With that trio of kicks, Walsh is now the first rookie in NFL history to kick 50-yard field goals in each of his team's first three games.

Follow Jim Reineking on Twitter @jimreineking.

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