T.J. Watt is on pace to break the Steelers single season sack record, currently sitting at 12.5 sacks, just three and a half shy of tying James Harrison's record of 16 sacks set in 2008, and four away from breaking it. His 12.5 sacks have him sitting in first place in the AFC in sacks, fourth overall in the NFL, while he is tied for second in the AFC in forced fumbles with three.
Watt got a big jump on closing in on the record over the last month, and that's part of why he was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Month for November.
During the stretch Watt recorded six and a half sacks, 16 tackles, 11 solo stops, nine quarterback hits and forced two fumbles.
"He'll probably win Defensive Player of the Year," said fellow outside linebacker Bud Dupree. "He's phenomenal. Smart player. Always anticipates what is going to happen. We feed off of him. T.J.'s a great player. It's been great seeing him grow."
Watt started the month off strong with one and a half sacks, for a combined loss of 13 yards, in a 26-24 win over the Indianapolis Colts in Week 9. It was his third game this season with one and a half sacks or more. Watt added three tackles, two of them solo stops, three quarterback hits and 1 tackle for a loss.
He didn't slow down the following week when he recorded two sacks, for a combined loss of 15 yards, against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 10, in a 17-12 win. It was Watt's fourth game in 2019 with one and a half sacks or more. Watt had a total of five tackles in the game, including four solo stops. He added two quarterback hits and in the fourth quarter sacked Jared Goff forcing a fumble, which the Rams were able to recover.
Against the Browns on Thursday Night Football, Watt sacked Baker Mayfield for a loss of four yards in the third quarter, putting the Browns in a hole on the drive and forcing a three-and-out. He added four tackles, two of them solo stops, two quarterback hits, one pass defense and a tackle for a loss.
He continued his hot streak, recording a sack in his eighth straight game, when he got to Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Ryan Finley, forcing a fumble, in a 16-10 win in Week 12. Watt also had two solo tackles and a pass defense.
Watt rounded out the month in the team's win over the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field when he added one sack, extending his streak to nine straight games with a sack. While the performance was on Dec. 1, Week 13 kicked off in November. Watt also had two tackles, two quarterback hits and a tackle for a loss.