A model of consistency in the Redskins' defense since he was taken in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft, outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan turned in a career year in 2014 with a team-best 13.5 sacks.
Ryan Kerrigan in 2014 turned in one of the best overall performances by a pass rusher in Washington Redskins history.
On Wednesday, the outside linebacker was honored for his efforts by being named the 2014 Sam Huff Washington Redskins Defensive Player of the Year at the 54th annual Washington Redskins Welcome Home Luncheon.
Presenting the award on Wednesday to Kerrigan was none other than Redskins great pass rusher Ken Harvey.
The accolade is just the latest of many for the Purdue product, who in May was revealed as the 78th-best player in the league on the NFL Network's "Top 100 Players of 2015" list, which is based on votes by players across the NFL.
It was the first "Top 100 Players" selection of Kerrigan's career.
"It's an honor to have been named to the Top 100 this year," Kerrigan told Redskins.com. "To be able to say that I was a top-80 football player in the NFL this past season is a really cool thing. I'm proud to be able to represent the Redskins on the countdown this year."
Kerrigan has been a model of consistency for the Redskins since being selected in the first round (16th overall) in the 2011 NFL Draft. The 6-foot-4, 260-pound Muncie, Ind., native enters 2015 having started all 64 regular-season games in which he has appeared.
He took his game to new heights in 2014, posting a career-high 13.5 sacks, tying Harvey (1994) and Dexter Manley (1984) for the fourth-most sacks by a member of the Redskins since sacks became official in 1982.
Redskins outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan was named the 78th-best player in the NFL in the NFL Network's "Top 100 Players Of 2015." Take a trip back through Kerrigan's career with the Redskins.
Kerrigan also had five forced fumbles in 2014, tying for the league lead and becoming the first member of the Redskins to finish atop league rankings in that category since LaVar Arrington's NFL-best six forced fumbles in 2003.
Kerrigan's top performance in 2014 came in Week 2 against the Jacksonville Jaguars, when he tied a team record with four sacks among the Redskins' team-record-tying 10 sacks on the day. He joined Brian Orakpo (2009), Phillip Daniels (2005), Harvey (1994) and Manley (1988) as the only Redskins to accomplish that feat.
Kerrigan – a Pro Bowl selection in 2012 – enters the 2015 season with 38 sacks, already ranking sixth in team history in that category. With six more sacks, Kerrigan would move into sole possession of third place, passing Orakpo (40), Harvey (41.5) and Monte Coleman (43.5). Manley (91) and Charles Mann (82) top the list.
The Redskins' front office also rewarded Kerrigan for his efforts this offseason, giving him a reported five-year contract extension that he signed at the beginning of training camp.
"We feel good about having Ryan Kerrigan as a defensive end or playing inside as a stand-up guy or dropping," Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said. "He can do it all. He's an accountable guy. He's never had an issue off the field here, being late to a meeting. Like I said, his work ethic is outstanding. He's a great example for younger players and he's going to get better as years go on."