Michael Thomas has become only the second wide receiver to win The Associated Press NFL Offensive Player of the Year award.
The Saints wideout is in good company: The other receiver to take the honor was Hall of Famer Jerry Rice in 1987 and 1993.
While Rice holds virtually all of the significant NFL receiving records, Thomas has one that made a huge difference with the 50 voters from a nationwide panel of media members who regularly cover the league. Thomas caught a league-record 149 passes for 1,725 yards and nine touchdowns. He also played five games without regular quarterback Drew Brees, yet made 42 catches in those outings.
Thomas edged Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson 19 votes to 17 in balloting announced at NFL Honors. Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey was third with 12, followed by quarterbacks Russell Wilson of Seattle and Patrick Mahomes of Kansas City with one each.
Brees is the only other Saint to win the award, in 2008 and 2011.