Rookie quarterback ROBERT GRIFFIN III of the Washington Redskins, defensive back RONDE BARBER of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and rookie kicker BLAIR WALSH of the Minnesota Vikings are the NFC Offensive, Defensive and Special Teams Players of the Week for games played on Kickoff Weekend 2012 (September 5, 9-10), the NFL
OFFENSE: QB ROBERT GRIFFIN III, WASHINGTON REDSKINS
– Griffin completed 19 of 26 passes for 320 yards (73.1 percent) with two touchdowns and no interceptions for a 139.9 passer rating in the Redskins’ 40-32 win at New Orleans.
– He is the only player in NFL history to pass for at least 300 yards and two touchdowns without throwing an interception in a player’s NFL debut.
– Griffin is the first rookie quarterback to throw for 300 yards and win a season opener.
– Facing a New Orleans team that was 8-0 at home in 2011, Griffin joined Pro Football Hall of Famer JOHN ELWAY as the only rookie quarterbacks since the 1970 merger to start and win a season opener on the road against a team that was undefeated at home in the previous year. Griffin is the only one to accomplish the feat by playing the entire game.
– In his rookie season from Baylor, this is Griffin’s first career Player of the Week Award.
– He is the first rookie quarterback to be honored on Kickoff Weekend since the award started in 1984.
DEFENSE: DB RONDE BARBER, TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
– Barber made his NFL-record 200th consecutive start at cornerback in the Buccaneers’ 16-10 win over Carolina.
– He had an interception, a sack, five tackles and two passes defensed in the victory.
– The performance was the third time in his career, including playoffs, that he recorded a sack and an interception in the same game. He is the only player in NFL history with at least 40 interceptions (44) and 25 sacks (28).
– Barber led a defense that held the Panthers to 10 total rushing yards, tied for the fewest rushing yards allowed in franchise history (12/4/94). Carolina’s offense led the NFC last year averaging 150.5 rushing yards per game.
– In his 16th year from Virginia, this is Barber’s 10th career Player of the Week Award, including the postseason.
– He has won nine times on defense and once on special teams. This is his first award since he was named NFC Defensive Player of Week 3 in 2011.
– Barber’s nine Defensive Player of the Week Awards are tied for the most in NFL history with Pro Football Hall of Famers CHRIS DOLEMAN, BRUCE SMITH and LAWRENCE TAYLOR and RAY LEWIS.
SPECIAL TEAMS: K BLAIR WALSH, MINNESOTA VIKINGS
– In his first NFL game, Walsh scored 14 points and converted all four field-goal attempts and two PATs in the Vikings’ 26-23 overtime win over Jacksonville. He sent the game into overtime with a 55-yard field goal at the end of regulation and then kicked a 38-yarder in OT for the game’s winning points.
– Walsh is the only player to win his NFL debut by sending the game into overtime at the end of regulation and kicking an OT field goal. He is one of only three players to win his first NFL game with an overtime field goal, joining MATT BAHR (1979) and TODD PETERSON (1994).
– In his rookie season from Georgia, this is Walsh’s first career Player of the Week Award.
Walsh is the first Vikings rookie to be named Player of the Week since PERCY HARVIN (Special Teams, Week 3, 2009).