Weekends in the fall are always the best. On Saturdays, you get to watch the current crop of Buckeyes easily dispatch their opponents, while Sundays provide an opportunity to watch all of the Ohio State football alum tear it up in the NFL. This week was no different, as there were no shortage of standout performances from your favorite crop of OSU alum in the league.
The biggest rookie performance of the weekend was by none other than Austin Mack. An undrafted free agent wide receiver, Mack got an expanded role with the New York Giants on Sunday, and he sure did make the most of it. He finished the afternoon with four catches for 72 yards to lead the team, and nearly had his first NFL touchdown before he was ruled down just a yard short.
Mack was the Giants’ highest-graded player on offense against Washington, according to PFF, despite playing less than half of the team’s offensive snaps.
Raise your hand if you're surprised that @Austin__Mack11 is making plays like this at the next level...— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) November 8, 2020
No one? Yeah, us either.
Watch the rest of the Buckeyes in the @NFL here: https://t.co/eRVhGooWjz pic.twitter.com/pD3sk7TtYt
There was not a ton of other action from Ohio State’s NFL rookies this past weekend, especially with guys like Damon Arnette (injury) and Jordan Fuller (bye week) not on the field this Sunday. We did, however, get good news on the Fuller injury front.
We’ve designated @j_fuller4 for return from IR pic.twitter.com/yJ35uyS9NZ— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) November 9, 2020
Other miscellaneous news and notes for Buckeye rookies
- Chase Young had a sack and two QB hits for the Washington Football Team.
- Malik Harrison led the Baltimore Ravens with 11 total tackles, while teammate J.K. Dobbins had 12 carries for 30 yards.
- Jonah Jackson started at guard for the Detroit Lions.
On the other sideline opposite Mack, Terry McLaurin continued to put on a show as he has done all season long for Washington. The newly appointed captain finished with a team-high seven receptions for 115 yards and a TD, including this impressive 68-yard score.
Terry McLaurin 68-yard TD— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) November 8, 2020
This is Alex Smith’s first TD pass since his return
McLaurin wasn’t the only former Ohio State wide receiver putting up numbers on Sunday. It appears the Carolina Panthers have figured out that Curtis Samuel is a Swiss Army knife on offense, as the speedster now has six total touchdowns in his last three games, including this 14-yard score on a pop pass. Samuel finished his afternoon against the Kansas City Chiefs with nine receptions for 105 yards and a TD, with another 13 yards rushing on three carries.
Curtis Samuel can RUN. #KeepPounding— NFL (@NFL) November 8, 2020
: #CARvsKC on FOX
: NFL app // Yahoo Sports app: https://t.co/MXkgo0fhcN pic.twitter.com/HHJT7gjdtG
There was also this, which in and of itself is just awesome.
November 8, 2020
There were a treasure trove of Buckeye performances in the Sunday night game, where the Ohio State-heavy New Orleans Saints dominated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. One of those impact performers was Malcolm Jenkins, who picked off Tom Brady in the third quarter.
YOU SHALL NOT PASS ♂️#Saints | : https://t.co/i8R5PLY4WQ pic.twitter.com/C8bxnZQBfZ— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) November 9, 2020
Jenkins is truly an iron man, and in an era where injuries to major stars happen all the time, the incredibly talented safety has missed only TWO (2!!!) snaps since 2018.
Malcolm Jenkins has missed just two snaps since 2018— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 9, 2020
He's played 2,633 out of a possible 2,635 snaps since 2018 (99.9%) pic.twitter.com/RpVVa9tsgi
His running mate, Marshon Lattimore, is a certified Mike Evans stopper.
Mike Evans' last three receiving lines against Marshon Lattimore including tonight:— Mike Clay (@MikeClayNFL) November 9, 2020
2 targets, 0 receptions
2 targets, 0 receptions
2 targets, 0 receptions
Star wide receiver Michael Thomas also made his return back from an ankle injury that has kept him sidelined since Week 1, catching five passes for 51 yards.
We missed you, Michael Thomas pic.twitter.com/NwaryPupYP— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) November 9, 2020
Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Cam Heyward made a huge play in their game against the Dallas Cowboys, helping to sack Garrett Gilbert in a crucial situation late in the fourth quarter on this impressive bullrush move. Heyward finished with four total tackles, including 1.5 tackles for loss, and three QB hits.
Put this long arm by Cam Heyward into the Hall of Fame. Put Cam Heyward in the HOF while we're at it. #Steelers pic.twitter.com/k3vRWGCRMx— Alex Kozora (@Alex_Kozora) November 9, 2020
Other miscellaneous news and notes for Buckeye veterans:
- Ezekiel Elliott had 18 carries for 51 yards for the Dallas Cowboys.
- Dre’Mont Jones had two tackles, a sack, a pass breakup and a QB hit for the Denver Broncos.
- Jerome Baker led the Miami Dolphins with seven total tackles.
- Kendall Sheffield had three tackles and a forced fumble for the Atlanta Falcons.
- Taylor Decker, Corey Linsley and Andrew Norwell started for their respective offensive lines.