HOUSTON – The NFL named Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt the AFC Defensive Player of the Week following his performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. Watt led the team with eight tackles (five solo), to go along with a single-game season-high 3.0 sacks, three tackles for loss, four quarterback hits, two passes defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery in the Texans' 30-6 victory.
It was Watt's 21st career multi-sack game, the second-most of any player in the NFL over his first five seasons in league history, and his fifth career game with 3.0-or-more sacks. Watt's 3.0 sacks on Sunday gave him an NFL-best 17.5 for the year, which marks his third career 15.0-sack season, the second-most in the NFL since 1982. Reggie White is the only other player to notch three 15.0-sack seasons in his first five years in the league.
Watt finished the 2015 season leading the NFL in sacks (17.5), tackles for loss (29) and quarterback hits (50). He leads the NFL in each of those categories since entering the league in 2011. The two-time Defensive Player of the Year also recorded 76 tackles (57 solo), eight passes defensed, three forced fumbles and one fumble recovery on the way to his third AFC South Division title in the last five years. His sack total ranks as the third-highest single-season mark in franchise history behind his 20.5 sacks in 2012 and 2014.
Watt has the second-most career sacks in a player's first five seasons in NFL history and this was his fourth straight season with 10.0-or-more sacks, which is the longest active streak in the NFL. This is also his second straight season with 50-or-more quarterback hits and fourth straight (2012-15) with 40-or-more. His last four seasons are currently the top four single-season quarterback hit totals since 2006.
Houston's defense finished third in the NFL in yards allowed per game (310.2), third in pass yards allowed per game (210.4), fifth in sacks (franchise-record 45.0), tied for third in passes defensed (90), and tied for seventh in points allowed per game (19.6). Houston finished the season going 7-2 in their last nine games and allowed an-NFL best 12.7 points and 263.0 net yards per game in that span.
This is the sixth Player of the Week award for Watt in his career, with the last one coming in Week 11 earlier this season, and the 35th time a Houston Texan has been named Player of the Week in franchise history.
Check out the snapshots from the Week 17 matchup between the Texans and Jaguars.