As expected, Seattle Seahawks rookie corner Devon Witherspoon’s outstanding performance against the New York Giants netted him the NFC Defensive Player of the Week award.
Witherspoon had a pair of sacks (one on Daniel Jones, one on Parris Campbell on a failed double pass), seven total tackles, and a 97-yard interception return for a touchdown that buried the Giants’ chances of a comeback.
7 tackles | 2 sacks | 1 pass deflection | 1 interception | 1 touchdown | NFC Defensive Player of the Week— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) October 4, 2023
It's now time to talk about @DevonWitherspo1 for Defensive Rookie of the Year. pic.twitter.com/X48A2mVqMV
Witherspoon’s pick-6 is the second-longest in Seahawks history, only behind Bobby Wagner’s 98-yard trot against the San Francisco 49ers in 2018. Much like Tre Brown earlier in the season, Witherspoon’s first interception doubled as a touchdown return.
OptaSTATS says Witherspoon did something no player in NFL history (or at least since sacks have been recorded) has ever done in a game.
Devon Witherspoon of the @Seahawks is the only NFL player (rookie or not) to have 2.0+ sacks and a 95+ yard TD in the same game (since sacks became an official stat for defenders in 1982).— OptaSTATS (@OptaSTATS) October 3, 2023
No other rookie has had 2.0+ sacks and a 95+ yard TD over the course of an entire season. pic.twitter.com/RNQINsUckm
You know it was a phenomenal showing worthy of winning an award when the other top NFC candidate was Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith, who sacked Bryce Young three times and forced a fumble that was eventually returned for a go-ahead touchdown. That probably wins DPOW most other weeks, but Witherspoon swooped in and showcased why the Seahawks took him at No. 5 overall.