He was recently named the NFC Special Teams Player of the Month for October, and it’s the kind of league recognition he’s deserved all season.
Week after week, Gillikin has proven his consistency as an elite punter and is probably the best in the league right now.
The stats tell the story: Gillikin managed to win the Saints prime field position in the last stretch of games which has indirectly helped a struggling and identity-less New Orleans squad achieve success.
Following an unfortunate loss to the New York Giants at the beginning of October, the Saints won the next three games partly due to Gillikin’s massive punts.
New Orleans Saints punter Blake Gillikin wins NFC Special Teams POTM
In Week 5 against Washington, Gillikin punted five times for 268 yards, averaging 53.6 yards per punt. In Week 6 against Seattle, Gillikin punted six times for 285 yards, averaging 47.5 yards per punt. And most recently, Gillikin punted three times for 158 yards, averaging 52.7 yards against the Buccaneers.
Gillikin currently ranks fifth overall in average yards per punt, but he’s shown something extremely special in the month of October.
With New Orleans’ quarterback situation yet again hazy, and with wideout Michael Thomas definitively out for the rest of the season, New Orleans will need a miracle to keep their offense alive for the second half of the season.
Sean Payton can’t depend on too many players, but he does still have Blake Gillikin. And Gillikin’s doing everything he can for this Saints team in 2021.