Melvin Ingram arrived at Hoag Performance Center on Thursday morning unaware he had won AFC Defensive Player of the Month honors.
"I didn't hear it until I got here," Ingram said. "But it was amazing. It's a great honor to get in this league."
Ingram could not take full credit for the award alone, citing his teammates are the reason he was bestowed the honor this morning.
In their Thursday pressers, Chargers Head Coach Anthony Lynn and Defensive Coordinator Gus Bradley both discussed what makes Ingram worthy of the honor. After inking big contracts, some players have been prone to rest on their laurels or get complacent. Not Ingram. He's been on a tear with his production as his 5.5 sacks are the most in the AFC and second-most in the NFL. Additionally, they are the most in the first three games in team history. Lynn explained how Ingram's work ethic and upbringing play into mindset of staying hungry:
"He deserved it. He's worked his tail off. I just wish we could have done it in some victories, but he deserved it. That just speaks to his character and his parents; how they raised him. He was raised right and he shows up every day to work.Hhe plays hard, regardless of the contract."
Before joining the Chargers this offseason, Bradley hadn't spent much time with Ingram. However, it was clear number 54 would be a perfect fit for the DC's scheme. Bradley discussed what Ingram's best asset is, and how that work ethic continues to be a driving force in Ingram's production:
"He's obviously a very good athlete, but I think one of his strongest strengths is that he's very explosive. He's one of the most explosive guys on our team, and that's what shows up. Just his knowledge of the game. He really is a student. He understands schemes. He sees it and understands it. He's a quick study and picks up on things really well. He's just been tremendous. I've only known him for a short period of time, but the Melvin I know (has) tremendous work ethic and is very professional. He can play multiple positions. Some guys are really good edge rushers but you put them inside and they're not as effective. But he has traits on the outside, he has traits on the inside…he just is unique that way. I'm not sure I've been around somebody who has all that type of skillset."
Melvin Ingram capped off September in impressive fashion, as he was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Month.