Ken Hamlin: NFC Defensive Player of the Month

It is an overwhelmingly triumphant entry in one of the more compelling comeback diaries in recent memory. Seattle Seahawks safety Ken Hamlin was named the NFC's Defensive Player of the Month on Thursday.

In October of 2005, Hamlin suffered a fractured skull, blood clot near the brain, bruised brain tissue and a fractured bone in his right hand during an altercation in Seattle’s Pioneer Square. Neither Hamlin nor the Seahawks knew for months whether he’d ever play again. He wasn’t cleared for non-contact workouts until April, and he didn’t participate in a full-contact practice until the 2006 training camp.

Hamlin returned to action in 2006, helping the Seahawks to a perfect 3-0 record in September and sole possession of first place in the NFC West. Hamlin finished the month tied for second in the NFL with two interceptions and third on the team with 18 tackles for the NFC’s fourth-ranked defense (ninth in NFL), adding a sack and a forced fumble.

In last week’s 42-30 win over the Giants, Hamlin’s two first-quarter interceptions led to 14 points en route to a 35-3 halftime advantage. In a 21-10 win versus Arizona on September 17, Hamlin’s sack and forced fumble led to an Arizona punt, with the Seahawks then taking the ensuing possession for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead. Hamlin posted six tackles on Kickoff Weekend in Detroit, as Seattle held the Lions without a touchdown in a 9-6 road win.

In his fourth season from Arkansas, Hamlin is the first Seahawk defender honored since linebacker Chad Brown in November of 1998. Hamlin and the Seahawks will face quarterback Rex Grossman, the NFC’s Offensive Player of the Month, and his Chicago Bears this Sunday.

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