SANTA CLARA — Tramaine Brock left work Wednesday with a pair of plastic-wrapped game balls in hand, awarded for being the 49ers' top defensive player in a given week.
He has five such mementos already this season, and one even bigger honor that means much more: a four-year contract extension from San Francisco that the emerging cornerback signed last month.
Brock, a fourth-year pro and NFL starter for all of five games, has four interceptions, 28 tackles and 12 pass deflections this year to help lead a dominant defense.
"It just feels good to accomplish a few things I always wanted to coming up in life, and now actually playing defense," Brock said. "I'm happy the team now has trust in me and believes in me."
The job security is certainly nice. Brock's new deal would pay him $16 million through the 2017 season, with $7 million in guaranteed money.
The larger responsibility is quite a confidence boost, and Brock is determined to help the 49ers (10-4) keep winning as they try to make another run at the Super Bowl a year after a 34-31 loss to Baltimore in the title game.
"You still have to go out there and perform," Brock said. "Not money wise, I just want it all, I want more. I want to go out there and be one of the best. That's what I fight every day for."
The 25-year-old Brock took over as a regular starter in a Week 12 Monday night game at Washington on Nov. 25, replacing the injured Tarell Brown.
Brock had been a reliable playmaker on special teams, and has transferred that success to the defense.
"I'm happy with myself, but I'm not content with it," Brock said. "It's the hard that paid off throughout my whole life. I want to keep it going."