Pro-Style Pigskins: Week Eight Edition of Illinois Fighting Illini in the NFL

Indianapolis Colts' cornerback Kelvin Hayden returns an interception for a touchdown during Monday night's victory against the Houston Texans.

Bringing back bad memories of the Bears-Colts Super Bowl, former Illini wide receiver/cornerback Kelvin Hayden had an interception return during Indianapolis’ Monday Night Football victory against the Houston Texans.

As for other Illini in the NFL, Denver’s Brandon Lloyd, Dallas’ Alan Ball, Kansas City’s Jon Asamoah and Tampa Bay’s Arrelious Benn were especially noteworthy on Sunday.

Kansas City Chiefs 13, Buffalo Bills 10

Offensive Lineman Jon Asamoah

Asamoah’s first pro start on Sunday was a happy one, as Kansas City kicker Ryan Succop drilled a 35-yard field goal at the end of overtime to avoid an embarrassing tie and put the Chiefs at a surprising 5-2 record.

Asamoah started in place of Ryan Lilja, who is dealing with a hand injury.

St. Louis Rams 20, Carolina Panthers 10

Tight End Michael Hoomanawanui and Linebacker Brit Miller

Hommanawanui had 2 catches for 19 yards as the Rams improved to 4-4.

Miller had 1 kickoff return for 0 yards and added 1 tackle on special teams.

San Francisco 49ers 24, Denver Broncos 16

Wide Receiver Brandon Lloyd

In London, Lloyd had a big game for the spiraling Broncos.

Against the team that drafted him, Lloyd caught 7 passes for 169 yards, including a 71-yard reception that set up a Tim Tebow touchdown run.

Lloyd also had 1 touchdown reception.

With his big game, Lloyd is once again leading the NFL in receiving yards, with 878 yards on 42 receptions.

Currently second, Atlanta’s Roddy White has 12 more receptions (54) but 131 less yards than Lloyd.

Green Bay Packers 9, New York Jets 0

Punter Steve Weatherford, Guard Brandon Moore, Tight End Jeff Cumberland

Weatherford had a decent game punting (a 43.2 yard average on 5 punts) but his biggest impact came on a fake punt in the first quarter.

Weatherford appeared to run for a first down after New York went for a fake punt deep in its own territory.

However, Weatherford was ruled just short of the first-down marker, thus giving Green Bay great field position and leading to its first of three field goals.

As for the Jets’ offense, it struggled all day.

New York ran for 119 yards on the ground and allowed two sacks of Mark Sanchez during a disappointing offensive performance following a bye week.

Jets’ tight end Jeff Cumberland was inactive for the eighth straight week.

Miami Dolphins 22, Cincinnati Bengals 14

Cornerback Vontae Davis

Davis had 1 tackle, 3 assists and 1 pass defended as the Dolphins held Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco to 8 combined receptions for 99 yards during the road victory.

Jacksonville Jaguars 35, Dallas Cowboys 17

Cornerback Alan Ball and Defensive Lineman Josh Brent

Looks like Dallas won’t be playing in the Super Bowl in its home stadium this season.

The Cowboys fell to a miserable 1-6 with another home loss.

Ball led the Cowboys with 7 tackles while Brent added two tackles.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38, Arizona Cardinals 35

Wide Receiver Arrelious Benn vs. Linebacker Will Davis

Benn had only 1 reception, but it was a big one late in the fourth quarter.

Benn’s 53-yard reception of a Josh Freeman bomb set up first and goal for the Buccaneers and paved the way for a LeGarrette Blount touchdown run.

Benn had 1 rush for 0 yards.

In a losing effort, Davis had a strong game for the Cardinals, finishing with 5 tackles and 1 sack that resulted in a loss of 14 yards.

New England Patriots 28, Minnesota Vikings 18

Wide Receiver Greg Lewis

For Minnesota, Lewis had only 1 reception for 4 yards, but at least he didn’t get carted off the field or released after the game.

New Orleans Saints 20, Pittsburgh Steelers 10

Running Back Pierre Thomas and Linebacker Danny Clark vs. Running Back Rashard Mendenhall

Thomas missed another game due to injury, but the Saints got the statement victory on Sunday Night Football.

Clark had 4 tackles for the victorious Saints.

As for Mendenhall, he rushed 15 times for 71 yards (including a long of 38), scored 1 touchdown and caught 2 passes for 14 yards.

Indianapolis Colts 30, Houston Texans 17

Cornerback Kelvin Hayden vs. Safety Eugene Wilson and Kicker Neil Rackers

In addition to 4 tackles for the victorious Colts, Hayden had a 25-yard touchdown run following an interception, bringing back bad memories of Super Bowl XLI.

Rackers drilled a 53-yard field goal and was perfect on 2 PATS for the Texans, which got 4 tackles and 2 passes defended from Wilson.

Week Eight Byes

Atlanta Falcons (None)

Baltimore Ravens (None)

Chicago Bears (None)

Cleveland Browns (Tony Pashos, out for season)

New York Giants (David Diehl)

Philadelphia Eagles (None)

Alright.

Until Week Nine.

Topics: Alan Ball, Arrelious Benn, Brandon Lloyd, Brandon Moore, Brit Miller, Chad Ochocinco, Danny Clark, David Diehl, Eugene Wilson, Greg Lewis, Jeff Cumberland, Jon Asamoah, Josh Brent, Josh Freeman, Kelvin Hayden, LeGarrette Blount, Mark Sanchez, Michael Hoomanawanui, Neil Rackers, Pierre Thomas, Rashard Mendenhall, Rejus Benn, Roddy White, Ryan Lilja, Ryan Succop, Steve Weatherford, Terrell Owens, Tim Tebow, Tony Pashos, Vontae Davis, Will Davis

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