Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith's inspiring Week 3 performance is the 2012 GMC Never Say Never Moment of the Year, the NFL announced tonight at "2nd Annual NFL Honors' -- a star-studded football and entertainment event saluting the best players, performances and plays from the 2012 season. "2nd Annual NFL Honors" airs nationally on Saturday, February 2, 9-11 pm (ET) on CBS. The GMC Never Say Never Moment of the Year is the best moment or play of the year that represents determination and perseverance.
In what would become a preview of the AFC Championship game, the Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots squared off in an emotional Week 3 showdown which would touch the hearts of many. Less than 24 hours after his brother died in a motorcycle accident, Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith, despite permission by his coach to sit out Sunday night's game, wanted to play. In one of the NFL's most inspirational individual performances, Smith produced the Never Say Never Moment of the Year, catching six passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns in the Ravens’ come-from-behind victory over New England on Sunday Night Football.
Smith's performance was selected from among five moments by voters on NFL.com/gmc. The five finalists were selected among 17 of the most memorable GMC Never Say Never Moments during the 2012 NFL season. Each week the NFL selected three nominees for the moments of the week on which the fans voted for the winner on NFL.com/GMC.
NEVER SAY NEVER MOMENT NOMINEES
Torrey Smith, Baltimore Ravens
Smith leads Ravens to emotional win: Less than 24 hours after his brother had died in a motorcycle accident, wide receiver Torrey Smith was given permission by his coach to sit out the Baltimore Ravens' Sunday night showdown with New England. But Smith wanted to play in his brother's memory. In one of the NFL's most inspirational individual performances, Smith caught six passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns in the Ravens' 31-30 come-from-behind victory in Week 3.
Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints
Brees sets record in Saints' first win: Johnny Unitas' record for consecutive games with a touchdown pass stood unchallenged for more than a half century. But the amazing mark of 47 games with a scoring strike was finally usurped by New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees in Week 5 against the San Diego Chargers, the quarterback's former team. Brees set the new record of 48 consecutive games with a 40-yard touchdown pass to Devery Henderson in the first quarter of the Saints' 31-24 win, the team's first after an 0-4 start.
Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos
Manning directs monumental comeback: Peyton Manning added another dramatic chapter to his storied NFL career in the Denver Broncos' 35-24 win over the San Diego Chargers in Week 6. The Broncos faced a 24-0 deficit at halftime, then scored 35 unanswered points in the second half to win. It was the largest deficit a Manning-led team had faced in a victory. It also showed NFL fans, perhaps for the first time, that Manning was completely back to his old self after sitting out all of the 2011 season with a neck injury.
Victor Cruz, New York Giants
Cruz's late TD lifts Giants past Redskins: As Robert Griffin III continues to evolve into one of the game's most exciting players, the New York Giants' dynamic duo of Eli Manning and Victor Cruz continue to rise to the occasion at the most crucial times. In a Week 7 back-and-forth game, RG3 gave the Washington Redskins a 23-20 lead with a minute and a half left. But Cruz and Manning answered with a 77-yard scoring strike with 1:13 to go, giving the Giants a 27-23 NFC East win over the eventual division champs.
Kirk Cousins, Washington Redskins
Cousins completes Redskins' comeback: As he was marching the Washington Redskins down the field in an attempt to tie the game in the final minute against the Baltimore Ravens, QB Robert Griffin III was injured on a scramble and had to leave the game. Rookie backup Kirk Cousins picked up where RG3 left off, hitting WR Pierre Garcon for a touchdown and then forcing overtime on a two-point conversion run play. In overtime, Kai Forbath booted a 34-yard field goal to provide the Redskins with a 31-28 Week 14 victory, the team's fourth straight.