Searching for the Best Pac-12 NFL Players Around
Each week, Unafraidshow staff scours box scores, articles, advanced stats, and social media to find the best Pac-12 NFL performances. Which players had the biggest moments in week 10? Which Pac-12 NFL players made the largest impact on their team?
While the Pac-12 is considerably frustrating due to Larry Scott and officiating, Pac-12 NFL players remind us that there’s still football after college. So, enjoy our school by school breakdown no matter where your program is on the Pac-12 Power Rankings.
Reggie Gilbert – Tennessee Titans
Honestly, there aren’t many Arizona alumni currently playing in the NFL. Therefore, any Arizona alum getting snaps instantly pops on the list. In their win impressive win against the Kansas City Chiefs, Gilbert played 24-percent of defensive snaps. He logged two tackles.
Is Reggie Gilbert one of the best Pac-12 NFL players in the league? No. But, he’s the best that Arizona has right now.
Terrell Suggs – Arizona Cardinals
Ageless. Against Father Time, Pac-12 NFL superstar Terrell Suggs is still winning. And what a career! He has the opportunity to join Reggie White and Julius Peppers if he sacks one more quarterback. Or, if he somehow can pull it off, Terrell Suggs could leapfrog them and sit atop the list. Incredible.
Even though they lost to Tampa Bay, it wasn’t because of Suggs. In their loss, Suggs racked up:
- 6 tackles (4 solo)
- 0.5 sacks
- 2 stuffs
It was another great game for an all-time player.
Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers
While not epic, Aaron Rodgers does a great job at leading scoring drives. Most of the time quarterbacks are judged by touchdowns alone. But, it’s important to remember that Aaron Jones ran three touchdowns in.
No, Rodgers didn’t throw a touchdown. This wasn’t one of his highlight games that makes Cal fans scream. However, his team scored three touchdowns and won 24 to 16. It was another one of his “elite game-managing” games. No one does it like Rodgers. He can minimize mistakes, play it safe, all while leading his team to scoring drives.
Isaiah Oliver – Atlanta Falcons
In Week 10, the Atlanta Falcons were without their top cornerback, Desmond Trufant. Additionally, they had to compete against a healthy Drew Brees. Everyone thought it was going to be an easy blowout.
Against the odds, the Falcons and their secondary held up. Especially because of players like Isaiah Oliver. Oliver racked up six crucial tackles in the second level. Oliver and the Falcons held Drew Brees and company to three field goals. No touchdowns. It was an impossible task, but they carried it out anyway.
DeForest Buckner – San Francisco 49ers
It’s the fourth quarter. The Seattle Seahawks are up 21 to 10 and they’ve got the ball back. All of a sudden, DeForest Buckner recovered a fumble and ran it in for a touchdown. It was exactly what the home team needed to get back into the game.
He finished the game with 5 tackles, 2 fumble recoveries and a big touchdown. The 49ers didn’t get the win, due to a shanked kick, but Buckner got hit.
Steven Nelson – Pittsburgh Steelers
Who would have thought that the Pittsburgh Steelers, without Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown, could make their way back to playoff contention? Somehow, they are. The Steelers are five and four. They’re wildcard hopefuls now.
However, it’s not because of their offense. Their offense still isn’t what it used to be. Nevertheless, Steven Nelson and the Steelers defense is great. They shut down Jared Goff and the Los Angeles Rams.
Eric Kendricks – Minnesota Vikings
Yet again, Eric Kendricks came up big. On fourth down, with 43 seconds left, Kendricks dove and deflected the pass to Ezekiel Elliott. He cemented the win against the Cowboys in a big way.
For the Vikings, Kendricks’ pass coverage is exceptional. His ability to cover tight ends and running backs is truly valuable for the Vikings. Because he’s a sure-tackler and impressive in coverage, he’s one of the best Pac-12 NFL linebackers around.
Ronald Jones – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Ronald Jones can’t catch. Well, at least that’s what everyone thought prior to this game. Jones had a breakout performance as a receiver. Because of this, turned heads and the Buccaneers finally have a running back to match their high-powered offense.
On the day, Jones caught 8 passes for 77 yards. Moreover, Jones found the pay-dirt. His breakout performance earned him a spot on our Pac-12 NFL list. But, it should more-importantly earn him a bell-cow role on his team.
Matt Gay – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Perfect. Matt Gay was perfect (if we don’t count his nulled miss because of an offsides call) in Tampa Bay’s win. Three for three for extra points. And, three for three from distances of 30, 45 and 41.
With so many missed kicks in the NFL, it’s nice when a kicker executes his job without mistakes. Kicking is a tough job without glory, but they’re players too. It’s okay to give them credit every now and then.
Budda Baker – Arizona Cardinals
Budda Baker was… EVERYWHERE!
- 10 tackles (9 solo)
- 2 passes defended
- One fumble recovery
This was Baker’s fourth game this season with at least 10 tackles. On the season, he now has 86 tackles. It is a monster season for Baker.
Jalen Thompson – Arizona Cardinals
With Deionte Thompson out, Jalen Thompson played 96-percent of snaps. Against playmakers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, the Cardinals had their work cut out for them.
But, Thompson played well. They didn’t get the win and Thompson didn’t get any turnovers. However, it was an impressive game for the rookie out of Washington State.