CHARLOTTE – Linebacker Luke Kuechly, who scored the Panthers' first defensive touchdown of the season Sunday to give them a lead they never relinquished, has been named NFC Defensive Player of the Week.
It's the fifth time that Kuechly has earned the honor, surpassing defensive end Julius Peppers for the most weekly defensive honors won as a Panther.
Carolina trailed the Jets 20-18 early in the fourth quarter when defensive end Wes Horton busted through the line and sacked Jets quarterback Josh McCown, forcing a fumble. Kuechly came flying up from downfield, scooped up the ball and sped 34 yards untouched for his second career touchdown. The Panthers went on to knock off the Jets 35-27.
Kuechly paced the Panthers with 10 tackles based on coaches' film review and leads the team with 88 tackles this season.