Lavonte David did a little bit of everything in the first month of the 2020 season and it earned him something he's never before collected in his brilliant career.
On Thursday, the NFL named David the NFC Defensive Player of the Month for September, the first such award in his career and the first for a Tampa Bay Buccaneer since outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett won the award last September. David is the sixth Tampa Bay player ever to win Defensive Player of the Month honors, joining Barrett, Warren Sapp, Derrick Brooks, Simeon Rice and Barrett Ruud.
The Buccaneers' defense is obviously off to a very good start, as David was joined in the awards circle by safety Antoine Winfield, Jr., who was named the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month.
David was recognized for his all-around performance that helped lead the Buccaneers to a 2-1 record and NFL rankings of fourth in yards allowed and seventh in points allowed. In those three games, David combined 24 tackles with two tackles for loss, one quarterback hit, one interception, two passes defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
David is the only player in the NFL this season who has already recorded 20 or more tackles with at least one mark in the interception, passes defensed, forced fumble, fumble recovery, tackle for loss and quarterback hit categories.
David's interception in Denver on Saturday was the 12th of his career and it helped the Buccaneers complete a second-half shutout in a 28-10 win over the Broncos. It also led to a Ryan Succop field goal as the visiting team padded its lead. His forced fumble and fumble recovery on the same play in a Week Two win over the Carolina improved his already impressive career totals in those categories. Since he entered the NFL in 2012 as a second-round draft pick out of Nebraska, David ranks first in the NFL in fumble recoveries (15) and tied for fifth in forced fumbles (22). He also ranks third in that span with 118 tackles for loss behind only multiple-time Defensive Players of the Year J.J. Watt and Aaron Donald.
David's first Player of the Month award adds to his two career NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors. He was also a first-team Associated Press All-Pro selection in 2013 and a Pro Bowler in 2015.