Whitney Mercilus is the AFC defensive player of the week

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Texans linebacker Whitney Mercilus said in the offseason that it was “pretty cool” to get a chance to show that he’s more than a pass rusher, but last Sunday’s win over the Jaguars showed he’s pretty good in that role.

Mercilus was a major thorn in the side of the Jacksonville offensive line as he notched a pair of sacks during the 13-12 Houston victory. Mercilus made those sacks count a bit more as he also forced quarterback Gardner Minshew to fumble on both occasions.

The Texans recovered the second of those fumbles and took advantage of a short field to score their only touchdown of the afternoon.

Mercilus also had a sack and an interception in the season opener, so he’s off to a fine start in the final year of his current contract.