The NFL cleaned up at Wednesday night’s ESPY Awards

Shutdown Corner

Of the 10 awards that could've gone to a player or team in any sport at Wednesday night's ESPY Awards, five are currently in the hands of NFL'ers. This is a big deal if you like to keep track of which of your favorite athletes will be forced to go home with a weird, cumbersome object that'll be hard to explain to airport luggage checkers.

Here's the list of big winners:

Best Comeback: Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, who had 5,000 yards and 40 TDs after playing just three games last year

Best Moment: Demaryius Thomas and Tim Tebow of the Broncos hooking up for an 80-yard touchdown pass to beat the Steelers in the playoffs

Coach/Manager of the Year: Tom Coughlin, who became the oldest coach to ever win a Super Bowl when the Giants beat the Patriots in Super Bowl XLVI

Record-Breaking Performance of the Year: Saints quarterback Drew Brees, for destroying Dan Marino's longstanding record for passing yards in a season

Game of the Year: The 49ers' 36-32 win over the Saints in the playoffs

As for the acceptance speeches, the highlight was probably Tebow. In typical humble Tebow fashion, he said he'd have voted for Bubba Watson's miracle shot at Augusta instead of his own moment. He also asked Peyton Manning to take care of his old teammates in Denver.

"I also want to congratulate and thank all of my old teammates ‒ take care of them, Peyton ‒ and I just want to thank them all."

That's actually kind of a tall order, as those receivers are now in much greater danger of actually being hit by footballs.

Manning was in attendance, on hand to present Pat Summitt with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award in a very nice moment. The other touching moment at the ESPYs was Tampa Bay Buccaneer Eric LeGrand receiving the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance.

Actor/comedian Rob Riggle, brilliant in "Step Brothers" and "The Other Guys," was the host of the show and delivered the monologue. Reviews of Riggle's performance as host were mixed, but I will confess a fondness for his Saints bounty scandal joke in his opening monologue.

"It makes you wonder why the Saints haven't re-signed [Drew Brees] to a long-term contract. I mean, is it a money thing? Man, if only the Saints had some sort of ... fund ... that they could pull extra cash from, to reward people for doing things on the field."

I don't think Brees loved the joke. But that's OK, because he did go home with an ESPY, which is, unquestionably, the single greatest accomplishment of his career.