OFFENSE: QB MATT CASSEL, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
Making his first career start on Monday Night Football, Cassel completed 18 of 24 passes (75.0 percent) for 185 yards with a career-high three touchdowns and a 136.3 passer rating as the Patriots defeated the Broncos 41-7. Cassel connected with wide receiver RANDY MOSS for his first two touchdown passes of the game, starting with a 13-yard strike in the end zone followed by a screen pass that Moss sprinted 27 yards for a score. The fourth-year veteran connected with wide receiver WES WELKER on a six-yard toss for his career-best third touchdown of the night. Cassel's career-high 136.3 passer rating was the highest in the NFL for Week 8. New England extended its win streak on Monday night to five consecutive games.
In his fourth season from Southern California, this is Cassel's first AFC Offensive Player of the Week Award. He joins DREW BLEDSOE, TOM BRADY, TONY EASONand SCOTT ZOLAK as the fifth Patriots quarterback to win the award. Patriots quarterback DOUG FLUTIE won AFC Special Teams Player of the Week in 2005 (Week 17).
DEFENSE: LB TERRELL SUGGS, BALTIMORE RAVENS
Helping the Ravens capture their first road win of the season, Suggs registered nine tackles, one sack and one interception-touchdown return in a 27-13 victory against Miami. The veteran linebacker broke a 3-3, second quarter tie when he jumped in front of a CHAD PENNINGTON pass intended for running back PATRICK COBBSand raced 44 yards for his first career interception-touchdown return. The 2005 Defensive Rookie of the Year recorded his 49th sack of his career and leads the team with four sacks in six games this season. The Ravens defense ranks second in the NFL allowing 243.8 yards per game.
In his sixth year from Arizona State, this is Suggs' second career Defensive Player of the Week Award. He previously won the award in 2005 (Week 13). Suggs is the first defensive player from Baltimore to win the award since RAY LEWIS in 2006 (Week 1).
SPECIAL TEAMS: K SEBASTIAN JANIKOWSKI, OAKLAND RAIDERS
Janikowski secured TOM CABLE's first win as the Raiders' head coach and Oakland's first home win of the season with a franchise record 57-yard field goal to defeat the New York Jets 16-13 in overtime. Janikowski's kick was the longest overtime field goal in NFL history, surpassing Packers' kicker CHRIS JACKE (53 yards on 10/14/96). Janikowski now has scored 855 points in his career and needs nine points to surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer GEORGE BLANDA (863) as the Raiders' all-time leading scorer.
In his ninth season from Florida State, this is Janikowski's third career Special Teams Player of the Week Award. He previously won the award in 2005 (Week 4).
Other nominees for AFC Offensive Player of Week 7 were:
- Buffalo quarterback TRENT EDWARDS, who completed 25 of 30 passes (83.3 percent) for 261 yards with one touchdown and a 114.0 passer rating in a 23-14 against San Diego.
- Baltimore rookie quarterback JOE FLACCO, who completed 17 of 23 passes (73.9 percent) for 232 yards with one touchdown and a 120.2 passer rating.
- Houston wide receiver ANDRE JOHNSON, who recorded 11 receptions for 141 yards (12.8 average) in a 28-21 win over Detroit.
- Tennessee rookie running back CHRIS JOHNSON, who gained a career-high 168 yards (9.3 average) on 18 carries with one touchdown in a 34-10 win against Kansas City.
- Pittsburgh running back MEWELDE MOORE, who gained 120 yards (6.0 average) on 20 carries with two rushing touchdowns in a 38-10 win over Cincinnati. He also added five receptions for 14 yards (2.8 average) with one touchdown.
- Tennessee running back LEN DALE WHITE, who rushed for a career-high 149 yards (8.8 average) on 17 attempts with a career-best three touchdowns.
Other nominees for AFC Defensive Player of Week 7 were:
- Pittsburgh linebacker JAMES HARRISON, who registered eight tackles and two sacks.
- Buffalo linebacker KAWIKA MITCHELL, who totaled seven tackles, one tackle for a loss, one interception and one forced fumble.
- Oakland rookie defensive end TREVOR SCOTT, who posted five tackles, career-high two sacks and one forced fumble.
Other nominees for AFC Special Teams Player of Week 7 were:
- Baltimore punter SAM KOCH, who punted three times for 177 yards (59.0 average), including a franchise long 67-yard punt.
- Houston punter MATT TURK, who punted four times for 195 yards (48.8 average), including three punts inside the 20-yard line.