FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – New England Patriots co-captain Matthew Slater was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week by the National Football League for his performance in the Patriots 13-9 win over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. It is the first Player of the Week Award for Slater in a career spanning 12 seasons and seven Pro Bowl selections as a special teamer.
Slater blocked a Dallas punt in the first quarter that was recovered by DB Nate Ebner at the Cowboys 12-yard line. It was Slater's first career blocked punt and it led to the game's only touchdown two plays later. It was the third blocked punt by the Patriots in 2019, tying a team record set in 1986.
The Patriots have now earned AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors in consecutive weeks following P Jake Bailey's performance in Week 12 at Philadelphia. The last time that happened was in Weeks 10-11 in 2017 by RB Dion Lewis and K Stephen Gostkowski.
New England has earned six NFL honors so far in 2019. In addition to Slater this week and Bailey's two AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors, LB Kyle Van Noy was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week for Week 4, DB Devin McCourty was named AFC Defensive Player of the Month for September and CB Stephon Gilmore was named AFC Defensive Player of the Month for October.