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Jerry “Hawk” Rhea Award for Outstanding NFL Team Physician


The Outstanding NFL Team Physician of the Year Jerry "Hawk" Rhea Award has been presented by PFATS (Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society) annually since 1998 at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis.  This award is named for Jerry Rhea, who served as head athletic trainer for the Atlanta Falcon from 1969 until 1994. Following his role as head athletic trainer, Rhea worked as Assistant to the President of the Falcons from 1994 to 2001.  In addition to his duties with the Falcons, Rhea has served as the President of the National Athletic Trainers Association and on multiple NATA committees.

This award is given to the NFL team physician who has made the greatest contributions to both the NFL and profession of athletic training.

Dr. Robert Heyer recipient of the 2019 Jerry "Hawk" Rhea Award following his acceptance speech.

Previous Winners

Year Physician Team 
2020 Dr. Robert Heyer Carolina Panthers
2019 Dr. Sheldon Burns Minnesota Vikings
2018 Dr. Walter Lowe Houston Texas
2017  Dr. James Andrews Washington Redskins
2016 Dr. Robert Anderson Carolina Panthers
2015 Dr. Elliott Hershman New York Jets
2014 Dr. James Bradley Pittsburgh Steelers
2013 Dr. Dan Cooper Dallas Cowboys
2012 Dr. Ted Schlegel Denver Broncos
2011 Dr. Patrick McKenzie Green Bay Packers
2010 Dr. Robert Heidt  Cincinnati Bengals
2009 Dr. Anthony Yates  Pittsburgh Steelers
2008 Dr. Michael Dillingham San Fancisco 49ers
2007 Dr. Walter Timperman
Dr. Allan M. Levy
Cincinnati Bengals
New York Football Giants
2006 Dr. Timothy Finney New Orleans Saints
2005 Dr. David Fischer Minnesota Vikings
2004 Dr. Russell Warren New York Football Giants
2003 Dr. Art Retig Indianapolis Colts
2002 Dr. Burton Zarins New England Patriots
2001 Dr. Charles Harrison Atlanta Falcons
2000 Dr. Charles Brown New Orleans Saints
1999 Dr. John Bergfeld Cleveland Browns
1998 Dr. Don Knowlan Washington Redskins


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