Nittany Lions In The NFL: Week One Roundup

The NFL is back. And so are former Penn State former football players.

One day after Penn State defeated Delaware, plenty of players who previously wore the blue and white kicked off their NFL season. It was admittedly a rough week for the Nittany Lions playing professionally, who will want to bounce back. But for others — we’re looking at you Sean Clifford — this week’s slate of games was a chance to impress in a debut.

Without further ado, let’s take a dive into the first week of NFL regular season action for the Nittany Lions.

Saquon Barkley, New York Giants


Saquon Barkley and the Giants put up a stinker of a performance against the Dallas Cowboys in its nationally televised Sunday Night Football showdown. The Giants were shut out 40-0 at home while Barkley rushed for just 51 yards on 12 attempts. Someone get this guy an offensive line.

Nick Scott, Cincinnati Bengals

Former Los Angeles Rams safety Nick Scott had one of the best performances of any Nittany Lion in week one, recording 11 tackles and one stuff in his first game for the Bengals. However, it wasn’t enough to get Cincinnati the win, as it fell 24-3 to the Cleveland Browns.

Pat Freiermuth, Pittsburgh Steelers

It wasn’t the prettiest of days for the Pittsburgh Steelers or for Pat Freiermuth, who lost 30-7 to the San Francisco 49ers. Freiermuth had just one catch for three yards, but that catch was the Steelers’ only touchdown of the game.

Freiermuth reportedly had to leave the game early after picking up a chest injury.

Allen Robinson, Pittsburgh Steelers

Freiermuth’s teammate, Allen Robinson, didn’t get to walk into the end zone in that loss against San Francisco, but he was the Steelers’ best pass catcher Sunday. Robinson finished the game with five catches for 64 yards.

Sean Clifford, Green Bay Packers

That’s NFL quarterback Sean Clifford to you, folks.

Clifford might be Green Bay’s No. 2 option at quarterback, but he still got some playing time at the end of that win over Jaquan Brisker’s Bears. Still, Clifford didn’t attempt a single throw before the game ended. Maybe next time, Cliff.

Jaquan Brisker, Chicago Bears

Brisker didn’t put up an all-time performance in the Bears’ 38-20 loss against the Green Bay Packers and recorded nine tackles and one pass defended. But for a second-year safety on a team that won just three games last year, it certainly wasn’t the end of the world.

Jahan Dotson, Washington Commanders

Jahan Dotson was one of Sam Howell’s favorite targets in the Commanders’ win over the Arizona Cardinals Sunday, catching five of the young quarterback’s passes — good enough to be tied for most receptions on the Commanders. Still, Dotson recorded just 40 yards as Washington eeked by the Cardinals 20-16.

Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Chris Godwin got a taste of the Baker Mayfield show Sunday, catching five passes from his new quarterback for 51 yards in the Buccanneers’ 20-17 win over the Minnesota Vikings. Even without the greatest quarterback of all time on the roster, Godwin and the Buccanneers held their own.

Micah Parsons, Dallas Cowboys

Welcome back, Micah Parsons.

Parsons didn’t contribute too much in the Cowboys’ rout of the Giants, but he did contribute three tackles and a sack in that shoutout win.

Miles Sanders, Carolina Panthers

Miles Sanders is wearing blue again, even if it’s a slightly lighter shade.

After joining the Carolina Panthers over the offseason after a Super Bowl run with the Philadelphia Eagles, Sanders made his Panthers debut Sunday. He touched the ball an impressive 18 times, recording 72 rushing yards along the way. He also caught four passes for 26 yards en route to the Panthers’ 24-10 loss to the Atlanta Falcons.

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About the Author

Joe Lister

Joe is a senior journalism major at Penn State and Onward State's managing editor. He writes about everything Penn State, especially its 10-2 football team. If you want to find him, Joe's usually watching soccer with his shirt off or at the gym with his shirt on. For dumb stuff, follow him on Twitter (iamjoelister). For serious stuff, email him ([email protected]).

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