Some of the greatest players and coaches in modern football gathered at the Pacific Club to celebrate the 42 nominees for the Lott IMPACT Trophy on Monday.
The watch list for 2012 can be found here.
The mood was tempered by the recent deaths of Rich Saul and Junior Seau.
Saul, who played for the Los Angeles Rams from 1970 to 1981 and was a six-time Pro Bowler, died from leukemia on April 15 at the age of 64 after an almost ten-year battle with the disease. His Rams jersey was enclosed in glass and hung at the front of the room while his wife, Nancy, listened to retired Rams players Doug Smith and Jackie Slater pay tribute to Saul.
"Jesus just took him over the goal line," Smith said.
Ronnie Lott discussed about Junior Seau and was still emotional over his death. Seau played for most of his career with the San Diego Chargers and was named an All-Pro linebacker for ten consecutive years (1991-2000). Seau died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound on May 2 at the age of 43.