The NFL has named Anthony Barr the NFC Defensive Player of the Week (the AFC player was former Lions safety Louis Delmas, now with the Dolphins). While I was a little more critical of Barr’s performance in my postgame review, it’s not as if he doesn’t deserve the award. Giving up the final touchdown was bad, but that is closer to par for the course than the positive performance it takes to strip, scoop and score in overtime—which is to say that though he gave up a touchdown, he did it on a routine play with a routine mistake, and he more than made up for it with an extraordinary play to seal the Vikings’ victory.
Barr is the 6th rookie linebacker to be named NFC defensive player of the week in the past ten seasons, with DeMarcus Ware, Clay Matthews, Brian Orakpo, Sean Lee and Luke Kuechly all earning those honors their rookie years. This is the first Vikings performance to get there since Antoine Winfield won the award in 2010 for his absolute dismantling of the Michael Vick-led Philadelphia Eagles.
It was a strip, scoop and score in the final seconds of the half to put the Vikings ahead that won him the award.