Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul and Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin were named the NFC’s players of the week for Week 14.
Ryan won the offensive player of the week award after his phenomenal second-half effort led the Falcons to a come-from-behind win at Carolina. The Falcons trailed 23-7 at halftime, but in the third and fourth quarters Ryan threw for 232 yards and three touchdowns, and the Falcons won 31-23. This is Ryan’s second career player of the week award; he previously won it in 2008.
Pierre-Paul was named defensive player of the week after he had eight tackles, two sacks, a safety, a forced fumble and a blocked field goal in the Giants’ 37-34 victory over the Cowboys. His safety gave the Giants a 2-0 lead, his forced fumble set up a field goal that gave the Giants a 15-14 lead, and his blocked field goal as time expired kept the game from going into overtime. Basically, without Pierre-Paul’s performance, the Giants don’t win that game and almost certainly don’t reach the playoffs.
Baldwin blocked a punt to set up a touchdown, returned a kickoff 37 yards and downed a punt at the six-yard line to lead the Seahawks to a win over the Rams, and he was an obvious choice for special teams player of the week. An undrafted rookie out of Stanford, Baldwin is also leading the Seahawks in both catches (45) and receiving yards (718). NFL scouts knew all about the quarterback who was passing to Baldwin at Stanford, Andrew Luck, but they seriously missed on Baldwin.