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Shield Spartans: Week 4 Update

Taking our weekly Monday look at how former Spartans did on Sunday

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


Name Score Completions Attempts Yards TDs INTs QB Rating
Kirk Cousins W 23-20 31 46 290 1 0 91.8
Brian Hoyer L 48-21 17 30 232 2 0 103.8

It was a bounce back for Kirk Cousins, one in which he was able to avoid the turnovers that have plagued him in his NFL career. Cousins did fumble on the one yard lines during the first half but he was able to pick up the fumble from the center-QB exchange and sneak into the endzone for a rushing touchdown. The Redskins needed a late drive led by Cousins to get the victory over the Philadelphia Eagles, capped by a four yard touchdown pass to Pierre Garcon. It was the type of performance that can keep Cousins in the starting role all season, but it is up to Captain Kirk to make this type of performance the norm, rather than the exception.

The Houston Texans were dispatched handily by the Atlanta Falcons, but it was not due to Brian Hoyer. Hoyer came off the bench for the Texans and threw for over 200 yards with two touchdowns. Unfortunately, for Hoyer, coach Bill O'Brien has already stated that Ryan Mallett will start for the Texans on Thursday night against the Indianapolis Colts but it appears the quarterback situation will be a weekly story for the Texans.

Running Backs

Le'Veon Bell a productive week after losing his starting quarterback last week in Ben Roethlisberger. Bell rushed for 129 yards on 22 carries, caught seven passes for 21 yards and had a highlight reel touchdown where he reversed field and scampered into the endzone. Bell will be counted on heavily over the coming weeks, as 2015 Michael Vick is a step down from Ben Roethlisberger. Bell will also be featured this week on E:60 on ESPN at 8:00 P.M. so be sure to check that out also.

The Chicago Bears finally got a win on Sunday but for the second week in a row Jeremy Langford was hardly a part of the gameplan as he received just one carry for four yards.

Wide Receivers

It was once again a highlight week for one of the Spartans' former wide receivers with Keith Mumphrey catching four passes for 56 yards and three kick returns for 69 yards in the Texans loss. The Texans may be down two receivers this week on Thursday with Cecil Shorts already ruled out and Nate Washington listed as day-to-day. Thursday on national TV may present a chance for Mumphrey to shine, with Spartans' fans getting a chance to see him in action. Bennie Fowler had just one catch in the Denver Broncos win over the Minnesota Vikings but that catch was a key first down completion for 11 yards on the winning drive. An interesting stat from Seth Newman, @Spartan_Radio on Twitter is that Fowler now has 5 career catches for 5 first downs in his first NFL season. Keshawn Martin and the New England Patriots had a bye week.

Tight Ends

Garrett Celek had 3 catches for 26 yards as the 49ers continued to bottom out, losing to Green Bay 17-3. Dion Sims was held out from the London game with the Miami Dolphins still recovering from a concussion. It appears Sims may return to the lineup this weekend and if he does he will be playing under a new head coach. Joe Philbin was fired Monday, to be replaced by Sims' position coach Dan Campbell.

Offensive Line

Dan France was not active on Sunday for the Bengals.

Defensive Line

It was a pretty impressive week for Will Gholston in Tampa Bay as he continues to surge ahead on a pretty talented defensive line. Gholston took 47 of a possible 58 snaps and he was rated the 3rd best 4-3 defensive end by advanced analytics site Pro Football Focus on Sunday. Gholston is ranked 8th overall at his position on the season and Gholston finished with three tackles on Sunday. Domata Peko started once again for the Cincinnati Bengals and recorded two tackles as the Bengals improved to 4-0.


Max Bullough was promoted to the active roster for the Houston Texans but he did not register any tackles on Sunday. Taiwan Jones and Marcus Rush are still present on the practice squads of the New York Jets and san Francisco 49ers respectively.

Defensive Secondary

Trae Waynes did not register a tackle or any pass break-ups for the Minnesota Vikings in their loss to the Denver Broncos. It was a more productive week for Darqueze Dennard who was rated one of the top 5 performers with the Bengals by Pro Football Focus. Dennard played 37 snaps and made 6 tackles with one pass defended. Trenton Robinson had three tackles in a win over Philadelphia and continues to impress the media in Washington.