Take a look through game photos of Joey Bosa during the last month of his rookie season.
The San Diego Chargers have never had a player named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month. In fact, only one offensive player ever took home the award, and that was Marcus McNeil back in September of 2006.
Joey Bosa changed all of that in his first four NFL games.
After missing the first quarter of the season with a hamstring injury, the third overall pick out of Ohio State announced his arrival in dramatic fashion. As a result, on Wednesday, he was named the NFL Rookie of the Month for October. The only other Bolt to win a similar award was cornerback Paul Bradford, who was named the AFC Rookie of the Month in 1997.
"Obviously to come in and make an impact means a lot, especially after all that went on (this summer)," he said. "I've never been a huge awards or accolades guy, but obviously it's a great honor to get an award or recognized for doing anything. It obviously means that I'm helping the team, and that's the most important thing. I'm happier that we got two wins out of the four games. Hopefully we can go on a better month from here."
Through four games, Bosa has totaled 13 tackles, six tackles for loss, four sacks, 16 pressures and a team-high 11 QB hits. Still, his stat line only tells part of the story. Number 99 has drawn numerous penalties per game by the offense as well as caused the opposition to double or even triple-team him.
While Bosa may have downplayed his individual accolades, his teammates were quick to point out its significance. Perhaps no one was more proud of the rookie than Brandon Mebane. The captain is in his 10th NFL season, and noted how Bosa's accomplishment is unlike any he'd seen over his first nine years as a member of the vaunted Seattle Seahawks' defense.
"This is a big (accomplishment). I think he's the first rookie I've played with that has won that (award). He's a great player. He has had a lot of production, and can just play. His football IQ is very high. The good thing is that he's just in his first year. I mean, can you imagine how good he is going to be once he gets into year four or five? Seeing what he's able to do now, it's like 'Wow! Prepare for what's coming.'"
"Joey's had an outstanding month," added Head Coach Mike McCoy. "I think we all understood when we picked him this year, once he got here with us back on the field in the games, the type of player he was. You saw the first time somebody tried to run the football on him, and the way he got after the quarterback, this is the guy that we thought we were getting. (We're) Very happy that he's out there with us impacting and helping our football team."
Defensive Coordinator John Pagano offered a similar assessment, noting how Bosa carries himself more like a seasoned vet than a 21-year old with only 16 quarters of experience.
"It's always great when these guys get honors like that" he said. "It starts with (Defensive Line) Coach Giff (Smith) in that defensive line room, and (Bosa's) effort with how he approaches the game as a young player. You almost look at him as a seasoned vet with how he handles himself. He's one of the first ones here and last ones to leave."