Ed "Pi Double i" Henderson
A Los Angeles Rams player has been snubbed as the NFC Defensive Player of the Week and should be the eighth Rams player to earn that Player of the Week honors this season.
Last week the reigning 2017 NFL Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald received that honor with his impressive three-sack game against the Arizona Cardinals. However, this week Rams starting inside linebacker Corey Littleton is snubbed by Philadelphia Eagles defensive lineman Fletcher Cox as the NFC Defensive Player of the Week.
Littleton, the third-year undrafted linebacker from the University of Washington accommodated the Rams to not only defeat their NFC West rivaled San Francisco 49ers, but also swept the division for the first time since the realignment in 2011.
Littleton's first quarter efforts on Sunday were so impressive as he set the tone for the Rams defense with two interceptions in the game. Littleton's first interception came by an errant pass thrown by 49ers quarterback Nick Mullens that intended for 49ers receiver Richey James.
Littleton initially returned the interception to the 49ers seven-yard line after being pushed out of bounds. However, after a review by the replay booth, it was determined that the ball would be spotted at the 49ers 13-yard line. Later in the first quarter, Littleton jumped another pass intended for James for his second interception that resulted in a 19-yard pick-six touchdown. His second interception became the Rams third of the first quarter and fourth turnover created in that period.
Littleton finished the game with four tackles, two interceptions, two pass deflections, and one touchdown against the 49ers. He finished the 2018 regular season with 125 tackles, four sacks, three interceptions, 13 pass deflections, and four blocked punts, and one touchdown on the season.
Littleton inherited the Rams starting linebacker position when the Rams traded away former captain Alec Ogletree in the off-season to the New York Giants, as he too calls the Rams defensive signals. Littleton impressed Rams Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips and linebacker coach Joe Barry during the training camps and pre-season to secure the position.
Despite Littleton's great play, unfortunately, the voters seemed more compelled with Cox's three sacks against the Washington Redskins. Cox playing against a crippled Redskins offensive line should not overshadow two interceptions and a touchdown return by Littleton.
Last month Littleton was named to the NFC Pro Bowl roster as a special team specialist.