His 11 tackles would have made Alexander a candidate.
Ripping the ball out of receiver Julio Jones’ hands and his two interceptions (one negated by penalty) would have made him a candidate. Being the best defender of a team that won in overtime on the road on defensive stand wold have made him a candidate.
Together, the other defensive players of the NFL never had a chance.
Alexander is the first rookie linebacker to record an interception, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery in the same game since Demeco Ryans (2006) and the first Buccaneers player to accomplish the feat since John Lynch (1996).
Alexander is the first Buccaneers rookie to earn Player of the Week honors since RB Doug Martin in 2012 (Week 9) and is only the third Tampa Bay rookie to be named Defensive Player of the Week, joining Santana Dotson (Week 4, 1992) and Paul Tripoli (Week 4, 1987). Alexander, who earned Pepsi Rookie of the Week honors following Tampa Bay’s Week 3 contest at Houston, joins Martin as the only rookies in team history to earn both Player of the Week and Rookie of the Week honors during their first campaign.