If you play college football in America then you’ll know that the Heisman Trophy is the highest honor that one can achieve at the end of the year. The trophy was first given out by Downtown Athletic Club in 1935 to recognize top talent in Mississippi East. The prize was named after Club’s athletic director – John Heisman.
University of Chicago halfback Jay Berwanger was the first recipient of the honor in 1935. Sports journalists, former winners, and fans all come together to decide the winner of the Heisman Trophy, year after year. Let’s take a walk down memory lane and go through a list of the last nine recipients that won this title.
Here’s a look at all the Heisman Trophy winners since 2010
2010 – Cam Newton
Former 2015 NFL MVP winner, Cam Newton is back in the NFL. Bill Belichick has opted to bring in the former Carolina Panthers man on a $1.75 million (including incentives) contract for the 2020 season. After major foot and shoulder injuries, Cam will be hoping to prove his doubters wrong. Of course, replacing the legendary Tom Brady is no small task, so all the best, Mr. Newton!
2011 – Robert Griffin III
Offseason Entanglement pic.twitter.com/T6MgZQ7Tcy
— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) July 20, 2020
The Baylor college graduate was the second overall pick in the 2011 NFL draft. He was drafted by the Washington Redskins (now Washington Football Team). Since then, he has spent time with two other NFL teams – Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens. Robert played as a back-up to Lamar Jackson (more on him below) for the Ravens last year.
2012 – Johnny Manziel
Amongst these nine players to win the Heisman Trophy, Johnny Manziel is the only one to have left the NFL. Ironically, Manziel was the first freshman to ever win the Heisman Trophy award. Manziel was the 22nd overall pick by the Cleveland Browns in 2014. However, his off-field issues caused multiple problems with him and he spent just one year in the NFL. After exploring his opportunities in the Canadian Football Leagues, Manziel last played for Memphis Express in 2019.
2013 – Jameis Winston
— Jameis Winston (@Jaboowins) September 5, 2019
Jameis Winston had a stellar 2013 season with Florida State. He became the second freshman after Manziel to win the prestigious Heisman Trophy, and the youngest too. Winston was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the first pick in the 2015 NFL draft. He left the Bucs this year to join New Orleans Saints where he will play as back-up to the legendary Drew Brees.
2014 – Marcus Mariota
"I've been impressed."
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) July 30, 2020
In 2014, Marcus Mariota became the first Hawai-born player to win the Heisman Trophy. He was also the first Oregon State player to bag that award. He was picked second in the 2015 NFL draft by the Tennessee Titans. After four years with the Titans, Mariota was signed by the Las Vegas Raiders in the offseason where he will play under reputed coach Jon Gruden.
2015 – Derrick Henry
Kings Stay Kings 👑 @KingHenry_2
— Tennessee Titans (@Titans) July 30, 2020
If you’ve noticed, the Heisman Trophy is mostly won by players in the quarterback position. You have to be pretty special to win the top prize while playing in another position. Only a handful of players have done that over the years. One of them is Tennesse Titans’ RB – Derrick Henry. The explosive running back won the Heisman Trophy in 2015 while playing for the Alabama Crimson Tide Football team. Henry won the Heisman Trophy ahead of NFL stars Christian McCaffrey and Deshaun Watson after he rushed for 2,219 yards and 28 touchdowns on 395 carries.
2016 – Lamar Jackson
Lamar Jackson has turned into a household name since the start of the 2019 season. The 2016 Heisman Trophy winner put in a stellar performance in the league last year. He became the first QB in NFL history to pass for 3,000+ yards and rush for 1,000+ in the same year. He also became the second player to win the NFL MVP award by a unanimous vote after Tom Brady did in 2012.
2017 – Baker Mayfield
Baker Mayfield put in a dominant display with the Oklahoma Sooners to bag the 2017 Heisman Trophy. Mayfield threw for 4,600 yards and made 40+ TDs to become the only walk-on player to ever win the coveted trophy. He was the number one pick (Cleveland Browns) in the 2018 NFL draft. However, things have not gone as planned for the young star as he finds himself in a ‘make or break’ season with the Browns this year.
2018 – Kyler Murray
— Kyler Murray (@K1) July 25, 2020
Kyler Murray was the second consecutive Oklahoma Sooners man to win the Heisman Trophy. He also became the only player to be picked in the first round of the MLB and NFL draft. Murray chose to play football and joined the Arizona Cardinals in the 2019 draft. Murray had a decent 2019 season with the Cardinals and made his debut on the NFL Top 100 list in July.
2019 – Joe Burrow
All eyes will be on LSU star Joe Burrow who was picked by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2020 NFL draft. In doing so, Burrow became the third consecutive Heisman Trophy winner to be picked first in the NFL draft after Mayfield and Murray. Joe ‘Shotgun’ Burrow had a pretty solid 2019 season with LSU. He threw for 5,600+ yards and made 60 passing TDs last year. He is expected to be the starting quarterback for the Bengals when the season starts in September.
SOURCE: THE HEISMAN TROPHY