Jake Locker was enjoying the best game of his NFL career. Facing the New York Jets and Rex Ryan‘s defense, he completed 18-of-24 passes for 149 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. He still had more than one-and-a-half quarters remaining to increase those totals. His day ended shortly after he was carted off the field with what’s now been reported as a hip sprain. Despite a 38-13 victory, many fans left LP Field feeling as though they had won the battle but lost the war.
Locker had one of many performances which would normally qualify him for a player of the week award. Not this week. Not after the game that Alterraun Verner had.
Plenty of quarterbacks have three-touchdown performances. How many defensive backs have two interceptions and a fumble recovery in the same game? All three of those turnovers resulted in Titans touchdowns. Those 21 points off turnovers were huge because it gave the offense great field position, making up for a lackluster ground game.
Verner has made a lot of people eat their words and reconsider their stance on the cornerback who entered training camp in a battle with Tommie Campbell for the No. 2 cornerback job. Now? Opposing quarterbacks (Ben Roethlisberger, Matt Schaub, Philip Rivers, Geno Smith) have a 12.9 quarterback rating when throwing at Verner. That makes him the NFL’s No. 1-rated cornerback.
Great to see Verner having success. Verner is a quality person who deserves every bit of his success.
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Past Player of the Week Award Winners
Week 1: N/A
Week 2: (Loss)
Week 3: Jake Locker
Week 4: Alterraun Verner
SOURCES: ESPN Box Score