Sheldon Richardson: 'Kiko Alonso, Tyrann Mathieu had outstanding rookie seasons'

Sheldon Richardson of the Missouri Tigers holds up a jersey on stage after he was picked overall by the New York Jets in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft at Radio City on April 25, 2013
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New York Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson says that Kiko Alonso and Tyrann Mathieu also had good rookie seasons in the NFL.

Sheldon Richardson has described Kiko Alonso and Tyrann Mathieu's rookie seasons in the NFL as "outstanding".

The New York Jets defensive tackle beat the Buffalo Bills linebacker and Arizona Cardinals safety to the league's defensive rookie of the year award.

The 23-year-old told ESPN: "I'm surprised. Kiko and Tyrann most definitely had outstanding rookie years and it was a toss-up to me.

"Kiko made a lot of tackles and Tyrann made a lot of plays down the field. Unfortunately he got hurt, but it was a tight race."

Richardson made 77 tackles, 3.5 sacks and a forced fumble in his debut season.

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