If they had a defensive player of the forever, I think 2012 JJ Watt might win it. He nearly broke the sacks record as a DT hybrid, and added 16 passes batted down for good measure. A season for the ages.
The 16 passes defended thing is what really gets me. Every year, there's someone that puts up nearly that many sacks, (not to demean the accomplishment; I don't mean it that way) but that many sacks AND that many passes defended? Just insane. Good for him, and screw whatever Denver homer voted for Von Miller.