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Duke in the NFL: Jones leads Giants to second-straight win, Tomlinson helps in Jets' comeback victory

Daniel Jones led the Giants to their first 2-0 start since 2016.
Daniel Jones led the Giants to their first 2-0 start since 2016.

With week two of the NFL done and dusted, the Blue Zone takes a look at how former Blue Devils fared for their teams:

Daniel Jones, QB, New York Giants 

Daniel Jones continued his solid start to the season Sunday, leading the Giants to a 19-16 victory against the Panthers. He went 22-of-36 passing, resulting in 176 yards and one touchdown to tight end Daniel Bellinger. Jones also added 21 yards on the ground. Most importantly, he kept the turnover sheet clean, something he has struggled with greatly thus far in his career. The main beneficiary from Jones’ day was wide receiver Richie James, who had five receptions for 51 yards, a team-best mark. Jones and the Giants—led by first-year head coach Brian Daboll—are 2-0 for the first time since 2016 and will try to keep this streak alive Monday against historic rival Dallas. 

Noah Gray, TE, Kansas City Chiefs

Despite being stuck behind Travis Kelce on the Chiefs’ depth chart, Noah Gray continues to find a way to contribute both on offense and special teams. Gray was on the field for 49% of the Chiefs’ offensive snaps, contributing two receptions for 12 yards. Gray also played half of the special teams snaps, recovering a crucial onside kick to stop the Chargers’ feverish comeback led by quarterback Justin Herbert. Kansas City escaped with a 27-24 victory Thursday night and next travels to Indianapolis Sunday. 

Chris Rumph II, LB, Los Angeles Chargers

Across the field from Gray was his former teammate, Chris Rumph II. Rumph only played seven snaps for a vaunted Chargers defense, but he made the most of it, recording two tackles. Rumph’s efforts were not enough to stop the Chargers suffering a close loss, who will look to bounce back at home against the Jaguars. 

Lucas Patrick, G, Chicago Bears 

As he continues to work his way back from a thumb injury, Lucas Patrick continues to get more playing time. He played 54% of the offensive snaps for the Bears during Sunday Night Football’s matchup with the Packers, compared to 47% in week one. Patrick and his fellow linemen enabled a strong performance on the ground from Chicago—where it ran the ball for a combined 180 yards—paced by 122 yards from running back David Montgomery. On the other hand, the pass protection was lacking, as quarterback Justin Fields was sacked three times and only attempted 11 passes. The Bears suffered a 27-10 to the Packers and fell to 1-1, hoping for a Sunday rebound against the Texans. 

Laken Tomlinson, G, New York Jets 

A staple in the Jets offense, Laken Tomlinson played all 70 snaps this week. The offensive line held up particularly well against a stacked Browns defense, allowing backup quarterback Joe Flacco to throw for 307 yards and four touchdowns and rookie wide receiver Garrett Wilson to have a huge day, with eight receptions for 102 yards and two touchdowns. Tomlinson helped lead the offense to two touchdown drives in the final two minutes of the game, with an onside kick recovery sandwiched in the middle. His efforts allowed New York to come out of this wild game with a narrow 31-30 victory. The Jets are now 1-1 and starting quarterback Zach Wilson should return for Sunday’s matchup with the winless Bengals. 

Jamison Crowder, WR, Buffalo Bills

In a Monday night 41-7 rout against the Titans, Jamison Crowder contributed both on offense and special teams. Crowder was responsible for one catch for 16 yards, as quarterback Josh Allen threw for 317 yards and four touchdowns. Crowder also had four punt returns for 41 yards. The Bills will look to continue their dominant start next week against undefeated Miami.

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