The award is voted on by national team coaches/staff, USWNT players who appeared in 2017, the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors, U.S. Soccer’s Athlete Council, NWSL coaches, select college coaches and select members of the media.
In league play, Mewis was named to the NWSL Best XI and was also a finalist for NWSL MVP in 2017. Mewis scored six goals and added three assists while appearing in every game as the Courage made it to the NWSL Championship. Rapinoe was also an MVP finalist, and was named to the NWSL Second XI. Despite missing time because of an injury late in the season, Rapinoe scored 12 goals and one assist in 18 games for the Reign.
Ertz, Horan and Morgan were all named to the NWSL Second XI in 2017 and all three made the NWSL Playoffs. Moved into a midfield role for the Red Stars, Ertz tallied four goals and three assists. Horan started every game for the Thorns and contributed four goals and two assists in the midfield. Morgan, who the award in 2012, was named August Player of the Month after a blistering stretch for the Pride in which she scored seven goals in five games. Morgan finished the season with nine goals and four assists in 13 appearances after rejoining the Pride midway through the season.
On the national team side, Mewis started every game and finished second on the USWNT in minutes. Morgan led the team with seven goals in 2017 and Ertz finished second with six. In assists, Rapinoe (five) and Horan (four) led the way.