After his two takeaways on "Monday Night Football," Kyle Hamilton is taking home an honor.
The Ravens' multi-talented safety has been named AFC Defensive Player of the Week after his stellar performance against the 49ers on Christmas night. With two interceptions and five tackles, Hamilton was the defensive star in Baltimore's 33-19 victory that gave the Ravens (12-3) the best record in the NFL.
Hamilton won the award despite not finishing the game due to a fourth-quarter knee injury. It's his first time winning the award and likely the first of many more this year.
Hamilton's first pick came on San Francisco's opening drive, when he made a perfect read as Deebo Samuel ran a crossing pattern near the end zone. As soon as 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy threw the ball, Hamilton seized the opportunity. A pass that was intended for Samuel became a throw that was picked off by Hamilton.
Hamilton's second interception may have been his most impressive because it displayed his determination to play all-out until the whistle. He was knocked flat on his face after a chop block by 49ers offensive lineman Aaron Banks, but instead of giving up on the play, Hamilton got up and caught a Purdy pass that was deflected by Marlon Humphrey.
Hamilton's impact as a safety who can blanket receivers, make physical plays in the box, lock down receivers in the slot or harass quarterbacks as a blitzer has made him an impact player in multiple ways. He was given the Ravens' highest defensive grade in Week 16 (91.5) by Pro Football Focus.
The performance magnified why Hamilton (81 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, four interceptions, three sacks) is one of the NFL's top safeties, worthy of All-Pro consideration in his second season. He is the only NFL player with at least four interceptions and 10 tackles for loss, and the first player to do it since Tyrann Mathieu in 2015.