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Nittany Lions In The NFL: Week One Roundup

Football is back, baby, and there’s no time like the present to watch former Penn State football standouts tear it up on the national stage.

This week, Giants superstar Saquon Barkley made headlines once again, Cameron Wake surpassed 100 career sacks, and Miles Sanders made his rookie debut.

Without further ado, here’s how some Nittany Lions fared in the first week of the 2019 NFL season:

Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

Barkley began Sunday’s match-up against the Dallas Cowboys by ripping a huge 59-yard gain that set up the Giants on the cusp of the red zone. The G-Men eventually scored on that drive thanks to a one-yard touchdown from tight end Evan Engram.

The Cowboys dominated Sunday’s game from top to bottom, which gave Barkley few opportunities on the ground. No. 26 finished with 120 rushing yards and 19 receiving yards on four receptions in the Giants’ 35-17 loss to Dallas. Barkley was incredibly efficient on the ground in the NFC East showdown despite few attempts, averaging 10.9 yards per rush.

Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Chris Godwin made the most of his limited looks Sunday afternoon and posted three receptions for 53 yards and a touchdown. His single score of the game came when he bested several 49ers defenders in a crowded end zone.

Although Tampa Bay went on to lose to San Francisco 31-17, Godwin continued to stay relevant in the Bucs’ passing game and make big plays when called upon. He remains a starting wide receiver for the struggling team.

Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles

Miles Sanders didn’t have much to work with Sunday afternoon in the Eagles’ 32-27 win over the Washington Redskins. The former Penn State star totaled 25 rushing yards on 11 carries and tacked on one catch for two yards.

Like many running backs, Sanders fell victim to the pace of game Sunday afternoon. The Eagles trailed heavily until mid-way through the third quarter, which prevented them from rushing the ball too often. He’ll likely see more playing time when Philadelphia heads to Atlanta Sunday night for what will certainly be a quarterback shootout between two potent offenses.

Allen Robinson, Chicago Bears

Boy howdy did Allen Robinson start off the season on the right foot. The Bears wideout hauled in seven passes for a game-high 102 receiving yards in Chicago’s season-opening 10-3 loss to Green Bay, including this sick, over-the-shoulder grab.

With the impressive total, Robinson surpassed all but one of his outings in 2018 (133 yards against the Minnesota Vikings in week seven). Such a high level of performance will be tough to repeat, but Robinson is on pace to tally 112 receptions for a whopping 1,632 receiving yards at the moment.

Cameron Wake, Tennessee Titans

Former Penn State linebacker Cameron Wake had a heck of a debut with the Tennessee Titans this weekend. The second oldest Nittany Lion in the pros behind Robbie Gould, Wake recorded three total tackles, 2.5 sacks, and a tackle-for-loss in the Titans’ 43-13 win over the Cleveland Browns. His performance even pushed him past the astonishing 100-sack milestone. Wake now has 100.5 sacks under his belt so far, and he certainly doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon.

Other Notables

San Francisco 49ers kicker Robbie Gould, who signed a new contract with the team this summer, converted three of four field goals and both extra points against Tampa Bay. Bucs linebacker Carl Nassib recorded two solo tackles in the same game.

Mike Gesicki caught two passes for 31 yards in the Baltimore Ravens’ 59-10 shellacking of the Miami Dolphins. Ravens backup quarterback Trace McSorley did not dress for the contest.

Defensive backs Grant Haley and Adrian Amos recorded four and five total tackles for the New York Giants and Green Bay Packers this weekend, respectively. Amos also had an interception for Green Bay. Fellow defensive standout Sean Lee made a solo tackle against the Giants.

Denver Broncos wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton caught just two passes for a measly five yards in the team’s 24-16 loss to the Oakland Raiders Monday night.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt is a sophomore majoring in journalism and is Onward State's copy editor. He's a huge Philadelphia sports fan, fantasy football aficionado, and sudoku whiz hailing from Collegeville, PA. The quickest way to his heart is Margherita pizza. Follow him on Twitter @mattdisanto_ for bad sports takes or email him at [email protected]

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