Patriots players of the week: AFC championship

Posted Jan. 22, 2012 @ 9:12 p.m.
Posted By Kevin Fishbain

The Patriots' offensive, defensive and special-teams players of the week from their AFC championship win over the Ravens.

Offense: RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis

On a day when Tom Brady appeared off his game, "The Law Firm" stepped up in the run game, rushing for 68 yards on 15 carries (4.5-yard average) and a touchdown. Establishing the run against the Ravens helped the Pats move the football. TE Aaron Hernandez was effective in the receiving game, with 7-66 receiving and the O-line deserves credit for protecting Brady and making holes for Green-Ellis to run through.

Defense: DT Vince Wilfork

When Ray Rice got a hand-off, he generally hit a wall if he tried to run up the middle. That wall was anchored by Wilfork, who was a monster in the win. He had six tackles, one sack and three tackles for loss, often dominating whatever the Ravens tried to throw at him. His work up front helped the front seven hold Rice to 67 rushing yards on 21 carries (3.2-yard average).

Special teams: PK Stephen Gostkowski

Gostkowski was perfect on field goals, hitting all three of his attempts. He was also effective on kickoffs with five touchbacks. The lone kickoff returned only got to the 20-yard line. Despite Danny Woodhead's lost fumble on a kickoff return, he did have a 41-yard return, the Patriots' longest kickoff return of the season.