by Grant PaulsenBy Grant Paulsen

London Fletcher has been named the NFC’s defensive player of the month for his efforts in a five-game December, according to the NFL.

Fletcher, who has been playing through a sprained ankle that his limited him in many practices and held him out of several others, finished the month as the league’s only defender with at least three interceptions and two sacks in December.

In addition to serving as a major playmaker for Washington’s defense, Fletcher’s 51 tackles ranked second in the NFL for the month of December.

A 37 year-old who showed no signs of slowing down at the end of his 15th season, Fletcher tallied double-digit tackles in three of Washington’s five December contests. He made 12 tackles in a nationally-televised win over the New York Giants and tallied 11 stops and a pair of sacks in another primetime game against the Dallas Cowboys to wrap up the season.

In the three games sandwiched between those performances, Fletcher intercepted a pass apiece while racking up 28 stops in victories over the Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles.

The captain of a defense that encountered a dramatic late-season turnaround, Fletcher’s impact on Washington’s seven-game win streak was more tangible than normal because of the dramatic game-changing plays he was making as a pass rusher and ball-hawking linebacker.

For the season Fletcher made 139 tackles and defended 11 passes, which ties his season-high in Washington. His five interceptions are the most he’s ever compiled in one campaign, and his three sacks in 2012 were the most he’s contributed since 2005.


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