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NFC Players of the Week

December 29, 2012
Richmond High School

Quarterback MATT RYAN of the Atlanta Falcons, defensive end JULIUS PEPPERS of the Chicago Bears and defensive end RED BRYANT of the Seattle Seahawks are the NFC Offensive, Defensive and Special Teams Players of the Week for games played the 16th week of the 2012 season (December 22-23), the NFL announced today.



  • Ryan, who was named to his second career Pro Bowl, completed 25 of 32 passes (78.1 percent) for 279 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions for a 142.6 passer rating in the Falcons’ 31-18 win at Detroit. With the victory, Atlanta clinched home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.
  • He completed his first 12 passes against Detroit. Dating back to Atlanta’s Week 15 win over the New York Giants, Ryan set a club record by completing 22 consecutive attempts, tied for the third-longest streak in NFL history.
  • Ryan tied his career high with four touchdown passes and improved to 17-1 (.944) in his career when he throws for at least three touchdowns in a game. He has 31 touchdown passes, tied for the single-season club record.
  • Ryan’s 142.6 passer rating marked his third career game – and second in as many weeks – with a mark of at least 140. In his career, the Falcons are 32-1 (.970) when Ryan has a 100+ passer rating.
  • He has 56 career wins, the most by a starting quarterback in his first five seasons in NFL history.
  • In his fifth season from Boston College, this is Ryan’s third career Player of the Week Award. He was also named the NFC Offensive Player of the Month in September for the second time in his career.
  • Ryan and MICHAEL VICK (four) are the only quarterbacks in franchise history to be named NFC Offensive Player of the Week at least three times.



  • Peppers had three sacks, a forced fumble, five tackles and a pass defensed in the Bears’ 28-13 win at Arizona. Chicago will clinch a playoff spot in Week 17 with a win and a Minnesota loss.
  • All five of Peppers’ tackles were behind the line of scrimmage for a total loss of 25 yards.
  • The performance marked his ninth career game with at least three sacks and his 23rd with at least two.
  • Since entering the NFL in 2002, Peppers has 111.5 sacks, the second-most in the league during that span.
  • He is tied for third in the NFC this season with 11.5 sacks, his eighth season with at least 10 sacks.
  • Peppers was part of a defensive unit that scored two touchdowns and did not allow one versus Arizona.
  • Chicago’s defense held the Cardinals to 248 yards of total offense.
  • Peppers was named to his eighth Pro Bowl, including each of the past five (three with the Bears).
  • In his 11th year from North Carolina, this is Peppers’ fifth career Player of the Week Award and second as a Bear (Week 11, 2010).
  • Peppers joins Pro Football Hall of Famer RICHARD DENT (six) and ALEX BROWN (two) as the only defensive ends in franchise history to be named Defensive Player of the Week multiple times.



  • Bryant blocked a field goal that was returned for a touchdown in the Seahawks’ 42-13 win over San Francisco. With the win, Seattle clinched a playoff berth and remains in contention for the NFC West division title.
  • Early in the second quarter, San Francisco lined up for a 21-yard field goal which would have cut the Seattle lead to 14-3. Bryant blocked the kick, which was returned 90 yards by RICHARD SHERMAN for a touchdown to increase the Seahawks’ lead to 21-0.
  • In his career, Bryant has blocked four field goals – the third-most in franchise history – and one PAT. In 2011, he set the single-season club record with four blocked kicks (three field goals, one PAT).
  • The 90-yard blocked field-goal touchdown return was the third-longest such return in NFL history. It was the first touchdown off a blocked field goal by the Seahawks since November 1, 1999.
  • ·         In his fifth season from Texas A&M, this is Bryant’s first career Player of the Week Award. 
  • ·         Bryant is the first Seattle DE to be honored on special teams since MICHAEL MC CRARY (Week 10, 1996).







Special Teams

Wk 1

QB Robert Griffin III, Washington

DB Ronde Barber, Tampa Bay

K Blair Walsh, Minnesota

Wk 2

WR Hakeem Nicks, New York Giants

DE Calais Campbell, Arizona

P Tim Masthay, Green Bay

Wk 3

WR Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona

DE Chris Clemons, Seattle

K Lawrence Tynes, New York Giants

Wk 4

QB Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay

LB Patrick Willis, San Francisco

K Greg Zuerlein, St. Louis

Wk 5

QB Drew Brees, New Orleans

CB Charles Tillman, Chicago

P Johnny Hekker, St. Louis

Wk 6

QB Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay

S Antrel Rolle, New York Giants

K Jason Hanson, Detroit

Wk 7

RB Adrian Peterson, Minnesota

CB Charles Tillman, Chicago

P Andy Lee, San Francisco

Wk 8

QB Alex Smith, San Francisco

S Stevie Brown, New York Giants

CB Davon House, Green Bay

Wk 9

RB Doug Martin, Tampa Bay

LB Brian Urlacher, Chicago

CB Sherrick McManis, Chicago

Wk 10

TE Jimmy Graham, New Orleans

CB Richard Sherman, Seattle

PR Dwayne Harris, Dallas

Wk 11

QB Robert Griffin III, Washington

LB Aldon Smith, San Francisco

K Dan Bailey, Dallas

Wk 12

QB Cam Newton, Carolina

CB Janoris Jenkins, St. Louis

KR-PR Leon Washington, Seattle

Wk 13

QB Russell Wilson, Seattle

S William Moore, Atlanta

K Greg Zuerlein, St. Louis

Wk 14

RB Adrian Peterson, Minnesota

LB Luke Kuechly, Carolina

KR-RB David Wilson, New York Giants

Wk 15

QB Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco

CB Brandon Carr, Dallas

K Blair Walsh, Minnesota

Wk 16

QB Matt Ryan, Atlanta

DE Julius Peppers, Chicago

DE Red Bryant, Seattle



Other nominees for NFC Offensive Player of Week 16 as submitted by NFC clubs:

  • New Orleans quarterback DREW BREES, who completed 37 of 53 passes (69.8 percent) for 446 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 114.2 passer rating in the Saints’ 34-31 overtime win at Dallas.
  • Dallas wide receiver DEZ BRYANT, who had nine catches for a career-high 224 yards with two touchdowns against New Orleans.
  • Detroit wide receiver CALVIN JOHNSON, who had 11 catches for 225 yards in the Lions’ 31-18 loss to Atlanta.
  • Seattle running back MARSHAWN LYNCH, who rushed for 111 yards and scored two touchdowns.
  • Green Bay quarterback AARON RODGERS, who completed 27 of 38 passes (71.1 percent) for 342 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 125.1 passer rating in the Packers’ 55-7 win over Tennessee. He also rushed for a touchdown.
  • Atlanta wide receiver RODDY WHITE, who had eight catches for 153 yards and two touchdowns.
  • Seattle rookie quarterback RUSSELL WILSON, who threw for a career-high four touchdown passes and had a 115.3 passer rating.



Other nominees for NFC Defensive Player of Week 16 as submitted by NFC clubs:

  • Green Bay linebacker A.J. HAWK, who had seven tackles and two sacks.
  • Washington linebacker RYAN KERRIGAN, who had five tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble in the Redskins’ 27-20 win at Philadelphia.
  • Carolina rookie linebacker LUKE KUECHLY, who had 13 tackles, an interception and two passes defensed in the Panthers’ 17-6 win over Oakland.
  • Atlanta cornerback ASANTE SAMUEL, who had five tackles and an interception.
  • Seattle cornerback RICHARD SHERMAN, who had five tackles, an interception and returned a blocked field goal 90 yards for a touchdown.
  • Minnesota cornerback ANTOINE WINFIELD, who had four tackles and a pass defensed in the Vikings’ 23-6 win at Houston.



Other nominees for NFC Special Teams Player of Week 16 as submitted by NFC clubs:

  • Green Bay punt returner-kick returner-wide receiver RANDALL COBB, who averaged 13 yards per punt return and set a franchise single-season record with 2,342 combined net yards.
  • Washington kicker KAI FORBATH, who converted two field-goal attempts and set an NFL record for the most consecutive field goals made to start a career (17).
  • Minnesota rookie kicker BLAIR WALSH, who converted all three field-goal attempts, including a 56-yarder. He set an NFL single-season record with nine 50-yard field goals.

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