Arizona Cardinals cornerback and special teams ace Justin Bethel was recently named to the Pro Bowl as a special teamer. He has earned yet another honor for his play on special teams. He was named Wednesday the NFC's Special Teams Players of the Month for December.
During the past month, Bethel led the NFL with eight special teams tackles, five of which came at the 20 yard line or inside, forced a fumble and downed a punt at the five-yard line. He collected the eight special teams tackles in a two-game span in Week 14 vs. Kansas City (four) and four days later in Week 15 at St. Louis (four). Bethel was also selected to his second consecutive Pro Bowl as a special teamer, becoming just the second player in team history (Ron Wolfley, 1986-89) to earn multiple Pro Bowl selections as a special teams player.
Overall in the 2014 season, Bethel led the Cardinals for the third consecutive year with 18 special teams tackles, and blocked his third career field goal in the Cardinals Week 9 victory in Dallas, earning his first career NFC Special Teams Player of the Week for the performance.
Bethel is the first Cardinals Player of the Month selection since 2011 when rookie punt returner Patrick Peterson won the special teams award in November. Besides Peterson, the Cardinals have been named Player of the Month just five other times since the award began in 1986: QB Neil Lomax (October, 1988), QB Boomer Esiason (November, 1996), S Kwamie Lassiter (November, 2001) and K Neil Rackers (October and December, 2005).