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    Green, Tomlinson share AFC award
    Green, Tomlinson share AFC award

    (Oct. 2, 2002) -- Quarterback Trent Green of the Kansas City Chiefs and running back LaDainian Tomlinson of the San Diego Chargers are AFC Co-Offensive Players of the Week, and Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis and cornerback-punt returner Chris McAlister are AFC Defensive and Special Teams Players of the Week for the fourth week of the 2002 season (Sept. 29-30), the NFL announced.

    Green threw for five touchdowns without an interception for a passer rating of 140.7 in Kansas City's 48-30 victory against previously undefeated Miami. The nine-year NFL veteran completed 24 of 34 attempts (70.6 percent) for 326 yards in the game. He joins LEN DAWSON and ELVIS GRBAC as the only quarterbacks in Chiefs history to throw five touchdown passes in a game (Dawson did it twice and threw for six touchdowns once).

    Only Trent Green could catch up to LaDainian Tomlinson in terms of performance in Week 4.  
    Only Trent Green could catch up to LaDainian Tomlinson in terms of performance in Week 4.   

    "Trent was very, very sharp," Kansas City coach DICK VERMEIL said. "The pass protection was excellent and when you give him time and people are executing properly, I believe that Trent will get the ball there. That was evident Sunday."

    In his ninth season from Indiana, this is Green's second Player of the Week Award.

    San Diego's Tomlinson ran for 217 yards and two touchdowns on 27 carries (8.0 yards per carry) in the Chargers' 21-14 victory against the previously unbeaten New England Patriots. The 4-0 Chargers' featured back had scoring runs of 37 and 58 yards to post the most rushing yards in a game this season and added 20 receiving yards on five catches.

    "He went out and played one of the best games I've ever seen a running back play," Chargers quarterback Drew Brees said. "I'm sure there's going to be a lot more games like this. It's reassuring to me and gives me a lot of confidence to know that he's back there and when I hand him the ball, he's going to make something happen."

    Chargers head coach MARTY SCHOTTENHEIMER was impressed with Tomlinson's adaptability. "In a couple of situations where we didn't block it clean, he did his magic," Schottenheimer said. "I've never coached a running back that has the kind of explosive change of direction he's got. MARCUS ALLEN was a great back. CHRISTIAN OKOYE was a great back. EARNEST BYNER, KEVIN MACK. But LaDainian's ability to explode when he changes direction is unique to what I've been around."

    In his second year from TCU, this is Tomlinson's first Player of the Week honor.

    Baltimore linebacker Lewis played a major role in the Ravens' 34-23 defeat of another previously undefeated team, the Denver Broncos, on Monday night. Lewis appeared fresh through four quarters, running sideline to sideline to record 18 tackles, plus an interception and two passes defensed. Eight of Lewis' stops held the Broncos to 3 yards or fewer.

    "I told the team just before we came out to follow me," said Lewis. "Match my passion. Match my energy. We know what we're supposed to do."

    Adds Ravens head coach BRIAN BILLICK, "You can't say enough about Ray Lewis. As I've said, he's probably the best pure competitor I've ever been around."

    In his seventh season from Miami, this is Lewis' fourth Player of the Week Award.

    Ravens cornerback-punt returner McAlister ran himself into the NFL record book with a 107-yard missed-field-goal return for a touchdown on the last play of the first half. The longest play in NFL history occurred when McAlister fielded a short field goal 7 yards deep in the Baltimore end zone and, thanks to Lewis' key block, returned it for a score. The four-year player from Arizona also returned three punts for 22 yards.

    "That's the way we practice it," said McAlister of his missed-field-goal return. "I watched and hung in the end zone and let my guys set up the wall. I got a heck of a block from Ray and we went with the wall. All I saw were purple jerseys and open field until I hit the end zone."

    This is McAlister's first Player of the Week honor.

    Other nominees for AFC Offensive Player of the Week were:

    • Buffalo quarterback Drew Bledsoe, who completed 28 of 36 passes for 328 yards and four touchdowns without an interception in the Bills' 33-27 overtime victory against Chicago. Bledsoe set the record for most career overtime touchdown passes (4);
    • New England rookie wide receiver Deion Branch, who had a franchise rookie-record 13 receptions for 128 yards;
    • Oakland quarterback Rich Gannon, who completed 29 of 39 attempts for 381 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions in the Raiders' 52-25 victory against Tennessee. Gannon posted a passer rating of 138.9 and helped the Raiders improve to 3-0;
    • Baltimore tight end Todd Heap, who caught a career-high five receptions for 84 yards and two touchdowns;
    • Pittsburgh quarterback Tommy Maddox, who came off the bench in the fourth quarter to complete 11 of 13 attempts for 122 yards and one touchdown with one interception to lead a Steelers comeback in their 16-13 overtime victory against Cleveland;
    • Oakland wide receiver Jerry Rice, who had seven catches for 144 yards and a touchdown. In the effort, Rice broke WALTER PAYTON'S record for most career yards from scrimmage with 21,281;
    • Jacksonville running back Fred Taylor, who recorded 237 combined yards (142 rush, career-high 95 receiving) with one touchdown in the Jaguars' 28-3 victory against the New York Jets.

    Other nominees for AFC Defensive Player of the Week were:

    • New England linebacker Tedy Bruschi, who led the Patriots with 11 tackles, eight of them solo;
    • Jacksonville safety Donovin Darius, who notched seven tackles, one interception and two passes defensed;
    • Pittsburgh linebacker Joey Porter, who posted eight tackles and an interception with a 27-yard return;
    • Kansas City safety Greg Wesley, who managed three interceptions and three solo tackles;
    • Oakland safety Rod Woodson, who had three interceptions, including one returned 82 yards for a touchdown. He surpassed EMLEN TUNNELL for most career interception-return yards (1,340).

    Other nominees for AFC Special Teams Player of the Week were:

    • Oakland cornerback-punt returner Phillip Buchanon, who scored on an 83-yard punt return, and set up a reverse on another punt return by handing off to teammate Terry Kirby, resulting in a 79-yard touchdown play;
    • Jacksonville punter Chris Hanson, who booted five punts for 53.2 gross- and 39.0 net-yard averages with two kicks inside the 20 and a long of 58 yards. He also had a touchback;
    • Pittsburgh kicker Todd Peterson, who converted 3 of 4 field-goal attempts (19, 24, 31), including the game-winner from 31 yards in overtime.
    • Kansas City punter Dan Stryzinski, who recorded five punts for a 41.2 gross average with two inside the 20.

    Week Offense Defense Special Teams
    1 QB Tom Brady
    New England
    DE Carlos Hall
    KR Chad Morton
    N.Y. Jets
    2 QB Drew Bledsoe
    LB Joey Porter
    K Mike Hollis
    3 QB Tim Couch
    DE Marcellus Wiley
    San Diego
    LB Larry Izzo
    New England
    4 QB Trent Green
    Kansas City
    RB LaDainian Tomlinson
    San Diego
    LB Ray Lewis
    CB-PR Chris McAlister
    5 RB Priest Holmes
    Kansas City
    CB Phillip Buchanon
    PR Bobby Shaw
    6 RB Travis Henry
    DE Jason Taylor
    K Mike Vanderjagt

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