David Hawthorne has been selected NFC Defensive Player of the Week after the Seahawks’ middle linebacker returned an interception 77 yards for a touchdown and shared the team lead with six tackles in a 31-14 victory over the Eagles last Thursday night.
This is the first time Hawthorne has been honored, but he is the second Seahawks defensive player to be selected in the past three weeks after defensive end Chris Clemons was the pick following his three-sack, two-forced fumble outing against the Rams in Week 11. Hawthorne also is the sixth Seahawks linebacker to win the weekly award, but the first since Lofa Tatupu in Week 13 of 2007.
Making Hawthorne’s efforts against the Eagles even more impressive was the fact that it was not decided whether he would be able to play until just before the game because of a knee injury that limited him in practice during the week and left him listed as questionable for the game.
“We didn’t know until the last minute when we had to put in who was going to be up and down,” coach Pete Carroll said after the game. “He said, ‘Don’t hug me, I’m full of DMSO and I have stuff all over me.’ He was really trying to work it like crazy to get out there, and he shows up with a 77-yard run.
“How cool is that?”
Very cool for the player his teammates call “Heater.”
Hawthorne, a third-year starter, leads the Seahawks with 78 tackles and is seeking to become the sixth player in franchise history to lead the team for three consecutive seasons.
Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch was a nominee Offensive Player of the Week after running for 148 yards and two touchdowns against the Eagles, but the choice was Panthers rookie QB Can Newton. Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner also was a nominee for Defensive Player of the Week. He had two interceptions against the Eagles.