For the second time this season, Sebastian Janikowski has been named the AFC Special Teams Player of the Month–and he did it while being hampered all month by a hamstring injury.
Last week he earned AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for his franchise record setting six field goal performance last week in a win over the Bears. Of his six field goals, four were from beyond 40 yards (40, 42, 44, 48). It was his third Player of the Week honor of the season. In that same game, he held the NFL’s active kick return touchdown leader, Devin Hester, without a single decent return.
Over the month of November, Janikowski was 10 of 11 on his field goals. His one missed field goal came on a block in the game in Minnesota. His kickoffs were not as booming as we have known them to be, but he has found ways around that with strategic kicks.
Last week’s game was all the more impressive considering just a few weeks ago, Janikowski was standing on the sideline, unable to kick at all. Prior to his injury, Janikowski was on a tear. He had missed just one field goal all season, from 56 yards out. He had been named Player of the Week twice and was also Special Teams Player of the Month for September.
He earned those honors for his record-tying 63 yard field goal in the opener in Denver and his record-tying three field goals of 50 yards or more in one game which he accomplished in week five at Houston.
Now that he is nearly back to full strength and winning weekly and monthly awards, perhaps he will make his first Pro Bowl. He currently leads all vote getters among kickers in Pro Bowl fan voting.