Browns linebacker David Bowens has been named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance this past Sunday in Cleveland's 30-17 win over the New Orleans Saints, the NFL announced Wednesday.
"It’s a tremendous honor to get something like that," Bowens said. "To share it with this group of guys makes it even more special."
Bowens had a career-high two interceptions and returned them for touchdowns of 30 and 64 yards, respectively. He joined Ken Norton (1995) and Derrick Johnson (2010) as the only linebackers in the NFL since 1970 to return two picks for touchdowns in a game. He also became the first Browns player to return two interceptions for touchdowns in a game since Bob Franklin did it in 1960 against the Chicago Bears.
"I think it comes along the lines of preparation," Bowens said. "Throughout the last four years, I’ve been able to play a lot and play extensively due to injuries or whatever circumstances there were. I was always prepared, I was always ready and I think a lot guys can take that with them. Whenever your number is called, you have to be ready to play and have to be ready to perform and do whatever is required."
Bowens, a 12th-year pro who had never won the award before, is the first Browns player to be named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week since cornerback Eric Wright was selected in 2008. Bowens is also the first Browns linebacker to win the award since Andra Davis in 2005.
"That’s great for him, first time in his career," Browns coach Eric Mangini said. "It’s probably overdue and well deserved, and we’re all really happy for him."