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Nittany Lions In The NFL: Week One Recap

The NFL is officially back in full swing.

After a crazy offseason, week one of the season didn’t disappoint. Many former Penn State stars shined in different ways for their respective squads. Saquon Barkley, Miles Sanders, and more helped lead their squads to a 1-0 record to start the season.

With that being said, here’s a closer look at how many Nittany Lions fared during the first week of the 2022 NFL season.

Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

The Saquon Barkley of old may just be back.

After struggling with injuries consistency over the past two seasons, Barkley showed out in week one against the Tennessee Titans, helping the New York Giants win their first season opener since 2016.

Barkley rushed for 164 yards on 18 attempts, recorded a rushing touchdown, and grabbed six receptions for 30 yards. On top of that Barkley, also caught a game-winning two-point conversion shovel pass from Daniel Jones to give the Giants a 21-20 edge.

Micah Parsons, Dallas Cowboys

While the Dallas Cowboys may not have looked great in their Sunday Night Football matchup with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Micah Parsons picked up right where he left off. Playing against legendary quarterback Tom Brady, Parsons sacked him not once but twice in the Cowboys’ 19-3 loss.

Parsons also recorded five tackles and continued to prove why he’s one of the best defensive players in the league.

Jahan Dotson, Washington Commanders

After being drafted No. 16 overall in the 2022 NFL Draft by the Washington Commanders, Jahan Dotson began his rookie season the only way he knows how. Dotson grabbed what would be the game-winning touchdown in the Commanders’ matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

To go along with the game-winning catch, Dotson scored another touchdown earlier in the game. He totaled 40 receiving yards on three receptions in Washington’s 28-22 win.

Jaquan Brisker, Chicago Bears

On the defensive side of the ball, Jaquan Brisker made an impact in his first NFL game. Early in the first quarter, Brisker recorded his first fumble recovery. Along with that, Brisker totaled four tackles, one of them being for a loss, in the Bears’ 19-10 season-opening win.

Pat Freiermuth, Pittsburgh Steelers

In what was probably the most exciting game of the weekend, the Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the reigning AFC champion Cincinnati Bengals in overtime. In the final minutes of overtime, Steelers quarterback Mitch Trubisky found tight end Pat Freiermuth twice to help set up what would be the game-winning field goal. Freiermuth totaled 75 yards on five catches to help Pittsburgh win 23-20.

Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles

Another Penn State running back had a great start to the season. This time, it was Philadelphia Eagles running back Miles Sanders. After not scoring a single touchdown during his entire 2021 campaign, Sanders was able to find the end zone midway through the second quarter.

Sanders recorded 96 rushing yards on 13 carries and helped secure the Eagles’ 38-35 week one victory over the Detroit Lions.

Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Chris Godwin made his anticipated return for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after tearing his ACL in week 15 of last season. Things started off well for Godwin, as he recorded a 24-yard catch on Tampa Bay’s first offensive play of the game. However later in the game, Godwin suffered a hamstring injury that will likely sideline him for a few weeks, according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. Godwin finished the game with 35 yards on three receptions.

Other Notables:

  • Los Angeles Rams’ safety Nick Scott recorded seven total tackles, one pass deflection, and a forced fumble in the Rams’ blowout 31-10 loss to the Buffalo Bills.
  • Punters Blake Gillikin and Jordan Stout of the New Orleans Saints and Baltimore Ravens, respectively, both had impressive starts to the season. Gillikin punted five times for 272 yards, kicking one inside of 20, while Stout had six punts for 291 yards, with three being inside the 20.
  • Green Bay Packers safety Adrian Amos had a very quiet day in the Packers’ 23-7 loss to the Minnesota Vikings, recording only three tackles.
  • Trace McSorley was able to get some playing time in the end of the Kansas City Chiefs’ blowout 44-21 win over the Arizona Cardinals. McSorley completed 2-of-4 passes for 12 passing yards and ran for 20 yards on three attempts for the Cardinals.
  • Arnold Ebiketie recorded his first career sack in the Falcons’ 27-26 loss to the Saints.

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About the Author

Matt Brown

Matt is a Junior majoring in broadcast journalism and minoring in Sports Studies from Bensalem, Pa. Matt is a huge Philadelphia sports fan and an overall sports fan in general. When not watching sports, you'll find him watching reruns of "The Office" or "Friends." To reach him, follow him on Twitter and Instagram: @matt_brown63, or email him at [email protected]

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