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Former Ohio State players come up big in Week 3 of the NFL

Malik Hooker snagged his 2nd INT, Carlos Hyde grabs 2 TDs, and more

New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

There were a lot of good things out of former Ohio State players in the NFL this week, including a breakout rush by a rookie, consistency for Buckeyes with the Colts and a lot of touchdowns. Week 3 will be wrapped up tonight with a Dallas Cowboys (Noah Brown, Ezekiel Elliott, Rod Smith) and Arizona Cardinals (Alex Boone) showdown in the desert on Monday Night Football.

Here’s all the other notable Buckeye moments from this weekend.

The Silver Bullets of the NFL

With three Buckeyes playing on the defensive side of the ball for the Indianapolis Colts, it’s only logical that one would draw comparisons to a squad that was super productive at the college level, now trying to bolster a position group that hasn’t stood out — at least in a good way -- for several years.

The tide is changing in Indy, with Malik Hooker becoming the immediate impact-player everyone thought he could be once he finally got healthy. Hooker has now come up with an interception two games in a row, but is still craving a Pick-6 at the next level. The NFL record for interceptions in a rookie season sits at 14, and if Hooker can keep this momentum, he could come close to making the record books.

Another Buckeye has been consistent for the Colts, linebacker John Simon. He’s now registered two sacks in consecutive games after a preseason performance filled with turnovers and takeaways. Simon’s value to Indy’s defense just keeps going up by the week.

Carlos Hyde has a 2 score day

After having three head coaches in his first three years in the league, running back Carlos Hyde is finally getting the number of carries and type of yardage he had hoped for since leaving Ohio State. Despite having hip issues mid-game, the Buckeye returned to the field and finished the night with 25 carries for 84 rushing yards and 2 TDs — his first scores of the 2017 season.

Ryan Shazier isn’t human

The linebacker keeps getting better which is an insanely scary thought — especially for opposing quarterbacks. In Sunday’s game against the Bears, Ryan Shazier managed 11 solo tackles, two forced fumbles (one fumble recovery) and two stuffs. He hasn’t snagged 11 solo tackles in a game since 2015, and now has 5 games with over 10 total tackles in his four year career.

Curtis Samuel has a breakaway

To say the Carolina Panthers offense has struggled through Week 3 would be a huge understatement. Quarterback Cam Newton has teetered between healthy and limited, and has found very little consistency with his offensive weapons. Rookie Curtis Samuel was designated as a receiver after coming out of Ohio State as an H-back, but he’s had limited success the past few weeks, with only four receptions on eight targets.

Samuel took his first rushing carry on Sunday and finally showed off his explosive playmaking potential. With just one rushing attempt, the Buckeye made a 31-yard gain and showed the NFL a glimpse of what he can contribute to the team.

Plays of the week

Ted Ginn Jr.

The Buckeye veteran is still doing big things in the NFL, coming away with a big score in Week 3. Ginn finished the day with 44 yards on two receptions and a score, and another 15 yards on the ground.

Michael Thomas

The second-year receiver was the first Buckeye to put points on the board for the New Orleans Saints on Sunday. Thomas finished the day with 87 yards on seven receptions and one trip to the endzone. He’s already averaging 13.0 yards per catch this season and has a 12.5 yard average through his young — and very bright - career.

Injury report and inactives

  • Rookie Marshon Lattimore was inactive Sunday for the Saints after coming out of Week 2 with a concussion — sustained after running into current and former teammate Vonn Bell (seriously).
  • Broncos TE Jeff Heuerman was questionable ahead of Sunday’s matchup, and even though he wasn’t listed on the injury report, he didn’t see any targets. Current and former teammate Bradley Roby was seen in a walking boot last Monday, but didn’t miss a beat in Denver’s game, finishing the day with four total tackles and a pass break-up.
  • Chargers QB Cardale Jones was inactive in Week 3 and Jets WR Jalin Marshall has one more game to serve under his suspension, but he’s back in the lineup.
  • After missing the first two games of the season, Nate Ebner (shoulder) was finally able to make it back onto the field — snagging two total tackles in his 2017 debut for the Patriots.