Saints Punter Blake Gillikin One of Nine Players in Franchise History to Earn Prestigious Honor
Saints punter Blake Gillikin had big shoes to fill this season.
Former Saints punter Thomas Morstead was a fan-favorite, a member of the 2009 Super Bowl team who kicked the biggest onside kick in league history, a Pro Bowler, and an integral part of the community.
Gillikin, who spent the 2020 season on injured reserve, has stepped into the punter role and crushed all expectations, proving to be a huge weapon for the Black and Gold.
Today, he was named the NFC Special Teams Player of the Month after his standout performances in October.
How good was Gillikin in October?
In the October 10th win at Washington, Gillikin became the first NFL punter in the 21st century to have three punts of 53-plus yards downed inside the opponent's 3-yard line.
Punting enthusiasts have described his performance as "punter porn".
Gillikin is the second Saints punter to earn an NFC Special Teams Player of the Month award. Morstead took home the honor for September 2019.
Gillikin is now one of only nine players in franchise history to earn an NFC Player of the Month award, which includes offense, defense, and special teams.
In the month of October, he punted 17 times for 843 yards 45.5 net punting), with 10 punts inside the opposition's 20-yard line.
With a number of close wins for the 5-2 Saints, Gillikin's punting prowess has been a crucial weapon for the team.
Check out his stat line in the 13-10 Monday night win at Seattle on October 25th.
It's not new for Gillikin, who has been crushing punts since his days at Penn State.
Gillikin doesn't seem to be concerned with the recognition. He's focused on winning.
While the Saints 2021 offense isn't the elite unit it has been in the past, this year's club has leaned on defense and special teams.
Gillikin's elite level at the punter position is vital to the success of the 2021 New Orleans Saints.
Don't be surprised if he has more NFC Special Teams Player of the Month honors in his future.