Olivier Vernon struggled as the Dolphins starting defensive end at the beginning of the season, but he's played like the team's best defender in the second half of 2013. Vernon, a former University of Miami standout, tallied 10 tackles and 2.5 sacks against the Jets. He leads the Dolphins with 10 sacks.
-- Omar Kelly
(Brad Penner / USA Today Sports / December 1, 2013)
DAVIE - The recognition just keeps rolling in for Miami Dolphins defensive end Olivier Vernon.
Following his 10 tackle and three sack performance Vernon was named the AFC's Defensive Player of the Week for Week 13 because of his performance in last Sunday's 23-3 win over the New York Jets.
Earlier this week Vernon, a former University of Miami standout, was named one of John Gruden's grinders.
Vernon initially finished the game with 10 tackles and 2.5 sacks, but a sack he initially shared with Philip Wheeler was given exclusively to him.'
He's clearly become one of the NFL's hottest pass rusher, and this isn't very surprising to the Dolphins.
Vernon is tied with New England defensive end Chandler Jones for fifth in the league with 10.5 sacks. Indianapolis' Robert Mathis leads the NFL with 15.5 sacks.
The honor marks the first time that Vernon has been selected as the AFC Defensive Player of the Week and the second time that he has been recognized with a Player of the Week honor.
In 2012, Vernon was honored following his Week Eight performance as the AFC Special Teams Player of the Week after he registered his first career touchdown when he recovered a blocked punt in the end zone and then went on to record his first career field goal block in a 30-9 road victory over the Jets on October 28.
Vernon joins fellow defensive end Cameron Wake as the second Dolphins defensive player to win Player of the Week honors in 2013. Wake won it for his week nine performance against the Bengals, where he contributed five tackles, three sacks and a game sealing safety.
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