Penn State Players in the NFL: Week 9
Penn State Players in the NFL
Penn State Nittany Lions continued to represent across the NFL in week seven. Although Penn State football may have suffered as of late, fans can still enjoy former Nittany Lions making noise each week at the pro level.
Players such as running back Saquon Barkley, tight end Mike Gesicki and wide receiver Chris Godwin have enjoyed increasing roles with their respective teams so far this season.
Although the New York Giants couldn’t get the job done on Monday Night Football against the Atlanta Falcons, former Penn State running back and second overall selection in the 2018 Draft Barkley remained a consistent threat. Barkley logged 94 all-purpose yards to go along with a touchdown. It just goes to show just how dynamic Barkley is when a solid performance such as this one was his second lowest rushing total of the season.
Barkley has produced in other ways when the rushing attack isn’t there for New York, such as receiving and blocking. The Giants should be thankful that they selected Barkley with their first-round pick because he continues to be the only bright spot for a team currently sitting at the bottom of the NFC East.
Miami Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki, who was also selected in the 2018 NFL Draft also has had a consistent rookie season thus far. The Dolphins have utilized multiple tight ends this season and look to continue as Gesicki hopes to recover from a shoulder injury in time for Thursday’s matchup against the Houston Texans. The former Penn State tight end sustained the injury in Miami’s 32-21 loss Sunday against Detroit.
Gesicki has still seen at least two targets in each of Miami’s games this season with exception of week two and the trend should continue despite the rise of fellow tight end, Nick O'Leary. With another former Nittany Lion on the defensive side, Cameron Wake who is also trying to get healthy in a hurry looks to help the Dolphins could make a turnaround after their week seven loss.
Another former Penn State player in the state of Florida, wide receiver Chris Godwin, has been consistently productive all season despite all of the noise surrounding the Buccaneers. With high profile wide receivers Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson as well as talented tight end OJ Howard, Godwin has managed to fit in and become of the most frequently targeted receivers on the team.
Godwin also remained consistent during the Buccaneers quarterback controversy when Ryan Fitzpatrick was the starter one week and Jameis Winston was the following. In the close week seven victory over the Browns, Godwin hauled in five of his six targets for 59 yards. Chris Godwin is poised to be a major key for the Buccaneers and their playoff push heading into the remainder of the season.
Saquon Barkley, Mike Gesicki, and Chris Godwin are just a few of the Penn State Nittany Lions contributing to NFL teams this season. If things continue we may even see some Penn Staters on the field during the 2019 NFL playoffs.
David Green is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism and minoring in communication: arts and sciences. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.