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A.J. Bouye wins AFC Defensive Player of the Week

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NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Jacksonville Jaguars Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback A.J. Bouye has been named AFC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in Week 10 after totaling four tackles and intercepting Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers in overtime and returning it 51 yards to set up the game-winning field goal by Josh Lambo to give Jacksonville a 20-17 overtime victory.

After punting on the opening series of overtime, the Jaguars had the Chargers in a third-and-nine situation at their own 11-yard line. On the Rivers pass, Bouye intercepted the ball at the Jacksonville 47-yard line and returned it 51 yards to the Los Angeles 2-yard line.

After a 15-yard taunting penalty and three runs, the Jaguars won the game on Lambo’s 30-yard field goal.

The interception was Bouye’s third of the season and ninth of his career. Bouye’s three interceptions in 2017 are tied for the most in a season in his five-year NFL career. According to Pro Football Focus, Bouye has been targeted in coverage 48 times this season and has allowed just 20 receptions (41.7 catch rate) for 300 yards, zero touchdowns, and three interceptions for a 36.8 passer rating, the lowest passer rating in coverage among cornerbacks that have played at least 75 percent of their team’s defensive snaps.

For reference, if a quarterback were to spike the ball every play, he would register a 39.6 passer rating.

Bouye’s interception marked the Jaguars’ fourth-ever interception in overtime and the first since 2012 (Derek Cox). Bouye joins Cox and Rashean Mathis (twice) as the only three players in franchise history to intercept a pass in overtime. The interception was also Rivers’ first career interception in overtime in 11 career overtime appearances. Bouye, who was acquired by the Jaguars in 2017 free agency, has totaled 30 tackles, three interceptions, and 11 passes defensed this season.

Bouye is the third Jaguars player to win AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors this season, joining defensive lineman Calais Campbell (4.0 sacks in Week 1) and linebacker Telvin Smith (10 tackles and a pick-six touchdown in Week 5).

The Jaguars’ three AFC Defensive Player of the Week awards are their most in a single season in franchise history and the most by any team in the NFL this season. Bouye joins fellow cornerback Jalen Ramsey as the only Jaguars defensive backs to win AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors over the past 10 seasons.