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Brian Robison Nominated for NFL Sportsmanship Award

Brian Robison knocked Kirk Cousins to the turf, and the defensive end immediately helped the quarterback off the FedExField turf Sunday.

It wasn't personal. It was just business, an 11-year veteran limiting a scramble to a 3-yard gain early in the third quarter, with a finishing touch of sportsmanship.

The latter quality has been just as inherent in Robison as the instincts that helped him make the play. He quickly halted his rush angle when he saw Cousins trying to escape a blitz by Anthony Barr.

Robison, who started his first game of the season and the 103rd of his career, has been selected as the Vikings nominee for the NFL's 2017 Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award.

The award was created in 2014 in honor of Pittsburgh Steelers Founding Owner and Pro Football Hall of Fame member Art Rooney, Sr. The winner will be selected by a vote of current NFL players.

Robison will join a nominee from each of the other 31 NFL clubs, and a panel of NFL Legends will select eight finalists (four from AFC teams and four from NFC teams).

Warrick Dunn, Curtis Martin, Karl Mecklenburg and Leonard Wheeler are on the panel that will determine finalists before Dec. 15 when players also vote for the Pro Bowl.

As with Pro Bowl voting, a team cannot vote for its own player for the Rooney Award, which was created to recognize "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 are Frank Gore of the Indianapolis Colts (2016), Charles Woodson of the Oakland Raiders (2015) and Minneapolis native Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals (2014).

The Vikings nominated Chad Greenway in 2014 and 2015 and Terence Newman in 2016.

The winner selected by players' votes will be announced during the nationally televised NFL Honors show on Saturday, Feb. 3 on NBC, the night before Super Bowl LII.

The winner will receive a $25,000 donation from the NFL Foundation to a charity of his choice and be presented a trophy that represents the important role that sportsmanship plays in football.

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