Week 13 Players of the Week

Posted Dec. 06, 2011 @ 12:16 p.m.
Posted By PFW staff

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Aaron Rodgers / QB / Green Bay Packers

The Giants gave the Packers their biggest scare of the season, but Rodgers was up for the challenge. After the Giants tied the game late in the fourth quarter with a touchdown and two-point conversion, Rodgers and the Packers' offense took the field at their own 20-yard line with 58 seconds remaining. It was more than enough time for the league's leading MVP candidate to put Green Bay in field-goal range. Rodgers completed all four of his passes, for 24, 27, minus-1 and 18 yards on a five-play drive in the final minute, and PK Mason Crosby made a 31-yard field goal as time expired to give the Packers their 18th consecutive win. Rodgers, who was sacked twice and hit six times by Giants defenders, threw four touchdown passes and also led the Packers in rushing, gaining 32 yards on four carries (8.0 average).

 

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Justin Houston / OLB / Kansas City Chiefs

One of the problems for the Chiefs this season has been the lack of a consistent pass-rush presence other than OLB Tamba Hali. Kansas City might have discovered another playmaker in Week 13. The Chiefs had only 13 sacks prior to Sunday, but Houston helped a pass rush that sacked QB Caleb Hanie seven times come alive. Houston, a third-round rookie out of Georgia, recorded the first three sacks of his career and forced a fumble on the third sack that Hanie managed to recover in the Chiefs' 10-3 win at Soldier Field. Houston finished with seven tackles and also had one pass breakup. The Chiefs' coaching staff has brought Houston along slowly this season. This was the breakout game he and the Chiefs had been waiting for, and it was a big reason why Kansas City broke a four-game losing streak.

 

SPECIAL-TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Lardarius Webb / CB-PR / Baltimore Ravens

It was highly unlikely that the Browns were going to forge a comeback after falling behind 17-3 to the Ravens, but Webb — a starting cornerback and Baltimore's primary punt returner — put the finishing touch on the Ravens' win, returning Brad Maynard's 40-yard punt for a touchdown in the fourth quarter. Usually Browns WR-RS Joshua Cribbs is the one making the highlight-reel returns, but it was Cribbs' miscue that helped spring Webb on his 68-yard TD return. Cribbs was the first Browns defender downfield. He slipped, though, and Webb took off, finding a crease made by blocks from safeties Tom Zbikowski  and Haruki Nakamura. Browns DB Buster Skrine gave chase and dove to stop Webb as he approached the 10-yard line, but he couldn't catch up. It was the first punt return for a TD of Webb's career.