Jacksonville Jaguars first-year WR Jaydon Mickens (jay-DON) has been named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance in Week 9 against Cincinnati, the NFL announced this morning.
In the Jaguars’ victory over Cincinnati on Sunday, Mickens, appearing in his second career game and on his second career punt return, took a Bengals punt 63 yards for a TD in the fourth quarter to give Jacksonville a 23-7 lead. Mickens finished the game with three punt returns for 82 yards (27.3 punt return avg.). The fourth quarter punt return TD marked the sixth career punt return TD in franchise history and the first since WR Rashad Greene Sr. on Dec. 13, 2015 vs. Indianapolis. Greene was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week after his punt return TD in Week 14 of the 2015 season.
Mickens, who was the only player in the NFL to score a punt return TD or kick return TD in Week 9, became the fifth player in franchise history to return a punt for a TD and his 63-yard score is tied for the sixth-longest punt return in franchise history. Mickens joins Greene (Dec. 13, 2015 vs. Indianapolis), Mike Thomas (Dec. 18, 2010 at Indianapolis), Bobby Shaw (Oct. 6, 2002 vs. Philadelphia) and Reggie Barlow (Nov. 21, 1999 vs. New Orleans; Sept. 13, 1998 vs. Kansas City) as the only players in Jaguars history to return a punt for a TD. Mickens was originally signed to the Jaguars’ practice squad on Sept. 18 and was promoted to the active roster on Oct. 21. He began his career as an undrafted rookie on May 12, 2016, and spent the entire 2016 season on the Raiders’ practice squad.
Mickens is the fifth returner in franchise history to win AFC Special Teams Player of the Week and the first to win AFC Player of the Week honors since LB Telvin Smith in Week 5. Mickens is the third Jaguars player to win AFC Player of the Week honors this season, joining Smith and DE Calais Campbell, who was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week in Week 1 at Houston.