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Matt Prater Earns NFC Special Teams Player Of Week

Kicker earns award after 13-point game against Browns

Kicker Matt Prater kicks a field goal against the Browns this weekend in Cleveland.
Kicker Matt Prater kicks a field goal against the Browns this weekend in Cleveland.

The Cardinals would have preferred to score touchdowns on a couple of their short-circuited drives in Cleveland, but there was never a worry about not scoring because they have Matt Prater on the roster.

The veteran kicker booted three field goals -- including a 51-yarder despite harsh winds on an overcast afternoon -- along with four extra points in the Cards' 37-14 win over the Browns, a game that earned him NFC Special Teams Player of the Week.

He is the fourth Cardinal to win a weekly award this season. Linebacker Chandler Jones, quarterback Kyler Murray and cornerback Byron Murphy won awards the first three weeks of the season, respectively. It is the 13th time Prater has won a weekly award in his career.

Prater surpassed the 1,500-point mark for his career in the game, and now has 1,510.

"He still has excellent leg strength and is a talented guy," said special teams coordinator Jeff Rodgers, who coached Prater in Denver. "The ball he kicked from 51 (against the Browns) went over the upright, vertical, so it would've been good from a long way. It's nice to be working with him again."

Prater set a franchise record with a 62-yard field goal earlier this season, although his NFL record of a 64-yard field goal set when he played in Denver was broken when Baltimore's Justin Tucker made a 66-yarder recently. Prater did try a 68-yard field goal in the waning seconds of the first half against the 49ers but it was no good.

Rodgers said Tuesday he thinks Prater has the ability to reclaim the record, but doesn't know if the opportunity would arise.

"So many things would have to align," Rodgers said. "I have full confidence Matt Prater can make and has the distance in his leg every single time we put him on the field. Every time I know he has the leg to make it.

"If it happens, we will welcome the opportunity."