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The Five Biggest Surprises of 2006: #5 - Paul Posluszny

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Kicking off our list of the five biggest surprises is Paul Posluszny. Now, I know what you're thinking. How can the returning Butkus and Bednarik Award winner be a surprise? I'll explain.

When Poz went down in the Orange Bowl clutching his knee who didn't lose their breath? As you watched him being driven down the tunnel on the back of the cart, who didn't say a little prayer hoping that wasn't the last time we would see Poz in pads again? The offseason was long and difficult for Paul. While everyone else was doing drills in spring practice, he was walking on treadmills and putting miles on stationary bikes.

Fortunately Poz didn't need surgery and the rehab went well. To start the season he was fitted with a bulky knee brace that slowed him down. To complicate things further, he was moved to inside linebacker from his familiar outside linebacker spot. It took a few games and a smaller knee brace, but Poz eventually settled in and returned to the dominating linebacker we all knew in 2005.

By the end of the season Paul Posluszny walked off the field the all time leader in tackles at Penn State. He was yet again named an All American and won his second Bednarik Award.