Saquon Barkley Named NFC Offensive Player Of The Week
Former Penn State running back and current New York Giant Saquon Barkley has been named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week, as announced Wednesday morning. Also announced this morning, former Penn State cornerback and now-Philadelphia Eagle Zech McPhearson has been named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week.
McPhearson and Barkley are the first Nittany Lions to win the award this season and are the first to win it since last January when San Francisco 49ers kicker Robbie Gould won the award.
Barkley earned the honor after dominating during the Giants’ week one 21-20 win over the Tennessee Titans in which he scored the game-winning two-point conversion. Along with that, Barkley rushed for a week-one high of 164 rushing yards and one rushing touchdown and 30 receiving yards.
This is Barkley’s third Offensive Player of the Week award won and his first since December 2019. After injuries and inconsistent play over the past two seasons have caused Barkley to fall off in many people’s minds, 2022 looks like a whole new season for him so far.
This is the New York Giant’s first Player of the Week award since week four of last season.
Barkley will attempt to improve the New York Giants to 2-0 for the first time since 2016 when they host the Carolina Panthers at 1 p.m. on Sunday, September 18.
McPhearson wins the award after grabbing two special teams tackles and recovering an onside kick early in the second half to help the Eagles narrowly beat the Detroit Lions 38-35.
After spending only two seasons at Penn State, McPhearson transferred to Texas Tech where he finished his college football career. He was drafted in the fourth round by Philadelphia in the 2021 NFL Draft. While he has not received much playing time at cornerback in his young career, McPhearson has excelled on the special team’s side of the ball for the Eagles, leading the team last season with 325 special teams snaps.
McPhearson is the first Philadelphia Eagle to win the Special Teams Player of the Week since Jake Elliot won it in week 11 of 2021.
Performances like this could earn McPhearson more defensive playing time for Philadelphia as it plays its first home game of the season against the Minnesota Vikings at 8:30 p.m. on Monday, September 19.
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