Jihad Ward, defensive end: Ward and the Ravens had a noon kickoff game against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. Ravens fans and Illini fans saw the best of Ward: 2 tackles including a sack on Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz... and... the worst: a roughing the passer penalty. The Ravens continue to roll and on Sunday won the Battle of the Birds.
Del’Shawn Phillips, linebacker: The Bills are having a solid season. Unfortunately, Phillips was placed on IR last week.
Whitney Mercilus, outside linebacker: The Texans, led by a veteran defensive group including Whitney Mercilus, are starting to play a lot better. Houston had a road game at division rivals Tennessee Titans and lost in overtime. Derrick Henry ran riot on Houston. Mercilus surprisingly did not record any stats on Sunday despite being in the starting lineup.
Nick Allegretti, guard: Allegretti and the Chiefs were eager to get back on the field in this re-scheduled matchup following KC’s only loss of the season to the Las Vegas Raiders. The Chiefs beat the Buffalo Bills 26-17 on Monday night. Allegretti played a lot and dominated. He replaced the injured Mitchell Schwartz who got banged up in the first half. Allegretti played well and even had a questionable holding penalty called against him. The refs called it a holding. It was more like a demolition.
Ted Karras, center: Karras started at center in Miami’s Week 6 AFC East Division game against the lowly New York Jets. Karras has started every single game for the Miami Dolphins. Even backup rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa made an appearance. The Dolphins dominated the game. Karras is a big part of Miami’s success in the trenches.
Clayton Fejedelem, safety/special teams: Fej was his usual solid self on special teams and he recorded 1 tackle on defense.
Hardy Nickerson, linebacker/special teams: The former Illini grad transfer was on the Vikings’ active roster yet again, this time against the then-winless Atlanta Falcons. Nickerson made an impact with 2 tackles in Minnesota’s 40-23 loss to Atlanta.
Practice Squad guys:
Chase McLaughlin is a practice squad member on the Minnesota Vikings. Veteran defensive lineman and former first-rounder Corey Liuget was added to the Houston Texans’ practice squad last week.