Week Nine featured the first appearance for 2021 NFL starting quarterback Trevor Siemian, along with a number of season highs in snap percentage and other stats by a variety of NU alumni. With the season now halfway through, here’s this week’s edition of Northwestern in the NFL:
In his first start as a replacement for injured Jameis Winston, the man famous to many Wildcats fans was strong but not stellar enough to lead his team to victory against a mediocre Atlanta Falcons team. He threw the ball for 249 yards and two touchdowns, completing 25 of his 41 passing attempts without being intercepted and was only sacked once, but Atlanta has consistently led New Orleans, 27-25. Regardless, Siemian’s play was probably adequate enough to earn him most of the shots in QB compared to compatriot Taysom Hill for the Week 10 clash with the Tennessee Titans.
In another impressive performance, Slater did his part to make sure quarterback Justin Herbert didn’t get sacked. The result was Herbert’s 32-for-38 performance, 356 yards and two touchdowns, his second best passer of the year. Throughout the year, the big man has dominated on the line, and throughout the year he has paid dividends for the Chargers, who are still tied for the AFC division lead. West after beating the Philadelphia Eagles 27-24 on Sunday.
After being listed as questionable to play, Lowry has indeed adapted to the Rodgers-less wrestling of Green Bay at Arrowhead Stadium. However, the former NU played a 34% snaps rate, the lowest of the season, and recorded just one combined tackle as the Packers fell to the Chiefs, 13-7.
With starter Kenny Clark out, Lancaster saw the field against Kansas City for a season-high 55 percent of Green Bay’s defensive shots. During that time, he made three total tackles, including one for a loss.
In a dominant 41-16 win for the Browns over rival State Cincinnati BengalsNewsome has set a number of season highs – and, given his rookie stature, career highs as well. He totaled five tackles and two defensive assists while playing 100 percent of Cleveland’s 75 defensive snaps. All of those numbers – the 75 shots played included – were the most he put together in 2021, continuing an already impressive first professional campaign.
Newsome wasn’t the only ex-NU Brown to peak this season on Sunday. Veteran Walker Jr. had 14 total tackles, including 12 solo and one for loss, on 83% of Cleveland’s defensive snaps. Both tackle numbers were the best of the season for Walker, who has become a force to be reckoned with at the center of a formidable unit for the Browns.
Hance played 100 percent of Cleveland’s offensive snaps, helping the Browns score 41 points, their second-best score of the year.
While playing a high of 44% in Cleveland defensive snaps, Odenigbo also had two best tackles in 2021 (both solo) and added a quarterback hit.
Skowronek played 4% of LA’s offensive snaps and 56% of his special teams snaps in his 28-16 loss to the Tennessee Titans.
Jones played 81% of Tennessee special teams snaps without recording a stat in the Titans’ 28-16 win over the Rams.
“Cats that have not played or recorded statistics this week: Godwin Igwebuike, Detroit Lions; Justin Jackson, Chargers of Los Angeles; Joe Gaziano, Los Angeles Chargers; Ibraheim Campbell, Indianapolis Colts; John Raine, Atlanta Falcons; Earnest Brown IV, Los Angeles Rams; Blake Gallagher, Baltimore Ravens.