The junior is one of five candidates for defensive player of the year honor


TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama junior Minkah Fitzpatrick has been named a finalist for the 2017 Bronko Nagurski Trophy, the Charlotte Touchdown Club announced Wednesday.


Fitzpatrick is one of five student-athletes from around the country named to the finalist list. Former Crimson Tide defensive lineman Jonathan Allen became Alabama’s first Nagurski Trophy honoree when he won the award in 2016.


Already regarded as one of the top defensive backs in the nation, Fitzpatrick is the Tide’s fifth-leading tackler with 44 stops and has added 5.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, six pass breakups, three quarterback hurries, one forced fumble and a blocked kick through 10 games this season. The Old Bridge, N.J., native is also a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award, Bednarik Award and the Lott IMPACT Trophy and was a first team midseason All-America selection by CBS, Sports Illustrated, the Associated Press, USA Today and The Athletic.


Joining Fitzpatrick as a finalist are: North Carolina State defensive end Bradley Chubb, Iowa linebacker Josey Jewell, Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver and Georgia linebacker Roquan Smith. The 2017 Nagurski Trophy winner will be announced on Monday, Dec. 4 at the Charlotte Touchdown Club Awards Banquet in Charlotte, N.C.