Before many Patriots fans had even tuned in to Sunday's 35-7 rout of the Buccaneers in London, safety Brandon Meriweather already had two interceptions. He was rewarded for his efforts by being named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week. But in the typical fashion of Bill Belichick-coached players, he knows there are much bigger things to think about.
"I just found out today, maybe a couple minutes before y'all came in," he told Boston.com. "I'm excited about it. But I know there's still a lot of work to be done."
Meriweather, who received the honor for the first time in his three-year career, deflected praise to his former mentor, Rodney Harrison. On this week's edition of NBC's Football Night in America, Harrison said, "Brandon Meriweather. He's a playmaker. Not only is he a defensive leader, but right now, he's the MVP of that team."
The praise from Harrison seemed to mean even more to Meriweather than the award itself.
"It means a lot," he said. "But you always have to take things with a grain of salt. I can't look at it too hard, because when you start to look at things too hard, then you start to play like it, you fall off, your head gets big. I'm trying to stay humble, and just continue what I've been doing."
Sounds like the Patriots defense is finally getting its head in the right place.
Meriweather picked off Tampa Bay's Josh Johnson on the Buccaneers' first possession of Sunday's game, returning the ball 31 yards for a touchdown. Later in the first half, he registered his second interception.
"The difference today is I was playing within the defense," Meriweather told The Boston Globe on Sunday. "I was being myself, but I was playing within the defense. The D-line got a great rush, and he happened to throw the ball like that, and I happened to have a good break on the ball."
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