It took Matthew Judon no time at all to acquaint himself with New England. His 12.5 sacks to date has made him a fan favorite on the field, and his lively personality only helped establish himself in his first season as a Patriot.
As it turns out, it isn't just fans who appreciate Judon's candor at the podium. On Wednesday, Judon was named the 2021 Ron Hobson Media Good Guy Award recipient.
The Ron Hobson Media Good Guy Award was established in 2016 by the Patriots beat writers. Every season they vote to honor the Patriots player who is most helpful and accommodating to media throughout the season. As weekly media obligations have changed with NFL protocols, including the elimination of open locker room sessions, every interview with players and coaches has become even more valuable to media members.
Every time Judon steps up to the podium or appears on a video call, he does so as himself. He comes in with high-energy and answers questions honestly and openly.
The Boston Herald's Andrew Callahan, the New England chapter president of the Pro Football Writers Association, said it was this consistent approach to media, even when the team had a losing record, that was so appreciated.
"Obviously, we've gotten to know you just over these last seven, eight months. It's been a little different in here, but I think in addition to the class and professionalism, we want to thank you for being open at 0-0, 2-4, 9-4," Callahan said. "That constant energy, which we've all written about. I'm sure you're sick of reading and hearing about it ... It's not always easy to be open with us in this building, but we feel like, you say this all the time, 'I'm going to be me every day.' Every day that you've been up here, we felt that."
While the award shows how much the Patriots beat values Judon's honesty, genuineness, and class, Judon said he appreciated the same about the folks covering the team.
"I can only be me, man. Everybody else in the world is taken up. Coming in here, some days are better than others, especially after a win it's easy to talk to you guys," Judon said. "I think y'all do your job with a lot of class and dignity and it makes it easy to come in here and to y'all. Thank y'all for the award. I just appreciate y'all being genuine people."
You can watch Judon receive the 2021 Ron Hobson Media Good Guy Award in the video below.