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Fuller chosen as Bears nominee for Rooney Award


Cornerback Kyle Fuller has been selected as the Bears nominee for the sixth annual Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award, which recognizes NFL players who exemplify outstanding sportsmanship on the field. Each NFL team nominated one player for the honor.

The award was created in 2014 in honor of the late founding owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pro Football Hall of Famer Art Rooney Sr.

Fuller leads the Bears with three interceptions and eight pass breakups and tops defensive backs with 49 tackles. Last year he was named first-team All-Pro and voted to his first career Pro Bowl after tying for the NFL lead with seven interceptions and topping the league with 21 pass breakups.

The winner of the Sportsmanship Award is determined by a vote of current NFL players. A panel of former players from the NFL Legends Community will select eight finalists (four in the AFC and four in the NFC) from the 32 nominees. The panel is comprised of Warrick Dunn, Curtis Martin, Karl Mecklenburg and Leonard Wheeler.

The eight finalists will be listed on the Pro Bowl ballot under the NFL Sportsmanship Award category when players vote on Friday, Dec. 13. From the eight finalists, each team's players will submit a consensus vote of their choice for the winner. As in Pro Bowl voting, a team cannot vote for its own player.

The award is presented each year to an NFL player who best demonstrates the qualities of on-field sportsmanship, including fair play, respect for the game and opponents, and integrity in competition.

Past recipients of the Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award include the Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald (2014), the Raiders' Charles Woodson (2015), the Colts' Frank Gore (2016), the Panthers' Luke Kuechly (2017) and the Saints' Drew Brees (2018).

The winner selected by the vote of the players will be announced during the nationally televised NFL Honors show on Saturday, Feb. 1 on FOX, the night before Super Bowl LIV. He will receive a $25,000 donation from the NFL Foundation to a charity of his choice. He will also receive a trophy that represents the important role that sportsmanship plays in the game and how NFL players that demonstrate integrity and honor on the field serve as role models for players at all levels.