Colts RB Jonathan Taylor, Rams WR Cooper Kupp lauded as Players of the Month

The second month of the 2021 season is in the books, and October’s chapter was highlighted by a distinguished list of individual standouts.

Not the least of which were the dynamic players recognized for their offensive prowess.

Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp and Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor led the way as the NFL Players of the Month for October were released on Thursday morning.

Taylor ran (and caught) his way to AFC Offensive Player of the Month honors. Taylor rushed for 478 yards over the last five games, averaging 6.1 yards a carry. He added 13 catches for 195 yards, producing 673 scrimmage yards and seven total touchdowns (six rushing) for the Colts.

Kupp continued to power the Rams’ high-octane offense. Kupp’s heading into November with three 100-yard games in a row, having hauled in 38 receptions for 557 yards during October and averaged 111.4 yards per game. Along the way, he found the end zone five times for L.A., which has won four in a row.

Though often regarded for their prolific offense, the Tennessee Titans’ defense was buoyed by safety Kevin Byard in October as he was tabbed AFC Defensive Player of the Month. Byard totaled 27 tackles, seven passes defended, three interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery for a touchdown, filling up the box score and bolstering Tennessee’s success.

AFC Special Teams Player of the Month accolades went to Buffalo Bills kicker Tyler Bass. Bass’ month was a perfect one, as he converted all 10 of his field goal tries, including two from beyond 50 yards, and was likewise perfect on point-after attempts at 13 for 13.

An unsung standout for the first-place Green Bay Packers, linebacker De'Vondre Campbell was named NFC Defensive Player of the Month. Campbell posted 45 tackles, with three for a loss, two forced fumbles, two passes defended, an interception and a sack for a Green Bay team that was a perfect 5-0 in October.

New Orleans Saints punter Blake Gillikin booted his way to NFC Special Teams Player of the Month. Gillikin landed 10 of his 17 punts inside the 20-yard line while still averaging 49.6 yards per punt with a long 63 yards.

On the rookie side of things, Pittsburgh Steelers running back Najee Harris was named Offensive Rookie of the Month and Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Nick Bolton was recognized as Defensive Rookie of the Month.

Bolton had 43 tackles and seven tackles for a loss in October.

Meanwhile, Harris continued to be a focal point in the Steelers offense with 356 yards rushing and 124 yards receiving, averaging 120 scrimmage yards per game as he collected four total touchdowns in the month (three rushing).

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