Well, Watkins earned a very different rookie of the year award. Earning 2015 Rookie of the Year honors from the Frisco Fire Department in Texas.
Last year, the former NFL player and Frisco Firefighter became the 150th emergency responder to earn the US&R Rescue Specialist Certificate from the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX).
Watkins got his dream. He’s a firefighter. Just as he always was and likely always will be.
When you look back on this story, its perplexing in so many ways yet is oddly so heartwarming. Danny Watkins was never a bust in the traditional sense because he never really wanted that life. It was the Eagles who ignored those red flags, those blaring sirens and the subtle quotes that hinted like a heartbroken man who can’t let go of his ex, longing for a reunion, his mind and heart were always elsewhere, regardless of how athletically dominant he was.
How the Philadelphia Eagles were somehow able to see through it all, then end up missing out an entire offseason with him and then watch all the rest of it unfold without even the smallest of concerns, is confounding. It’s purely on the former coaching staff and talent evaluators for letting rose tinted glasses get in the way of seeing a man who just wanted to help his community.
Danny Watkins won’t ever make it to Canton, but he’ll always be a local hero, in the small town of West Kelowna.