The Houndie is an award formerly known as the Buckeye NFLer of the Week. After 2 years of existence, we searched for a catchier name, so with the help of a well placed typo and the ensuing 11W comments, the current title was created.
Week Five turned out to be a ho-hum weekend for the former Buckeyes in the NFL and most were on the losing end, which made this week’s decision even tougher. The good news however was the return of Brian Robiski, Ted Ginn and Santonio Holmes, with word coming down Monday that Michael Jenkins was cleared to play starting Week 6 and Gonzo returned to practice.
Let’s start out West, where Beanie Wells got the majority of the carries for the first time all season, toting it 20 times in the Cardinals 30-20 upset win over the Saints. The problem was Wells only gained 35 yards on the day, with a long of 7, while adding 1 catch for 5 yards. Wells had all but one of the Cardinals’ carries in the second half, hopefully paving the way for a strong second half of the season. For the Saints, Malcolm Jenkins recorded 3 solo stops, but Will Smith was held statless after being bothered by a groin injury all week.
As mentioned, Teddy Ginn returned to action and made an immediate impact in the return game for the 49ers. Ginn returned 5 kicks for a 36 yard average, including a 44 yarder to open the game and a 61 yarder in the 4th, which help set up a much needed TD with just over 2 minutes left. Teddy Junior also caught 2 balls for 26 yards and returned 2 punts for a total of 8 yards. Nate Clements added 5 solo tackles, while Kurt Coleman of the Eagles didn’t see the box score for the first time this season,as the Eagles downed the 49ers 27-24.
Also on offense, Brian Robiski caught a late pass for 5 yards in Cleveland’s 20-10 loss to the Falcons and Joey Galloway snagged 3 for 28 in Washington’s come from behind OT 16-13 win over Green Bay. AJ Hawk had 5 solos and 4 assists, good for second on the team and now tops for the Pack for the season. Ryan Pickett suffered an early knee injury and didn’t return.
The streaking Rams got demolished in Detroit, 44-6, giving the Lions their first victory of the season. Laurinaitis had 7 total tackles, while Na’il Diggs had 3. In another spanking, Chris Gamble and the Panthers lost to the Bears, 23-6. They held Chicago to 29 yards net passing and intercepted Todd Collins 4 times. Matt Forte rushed for 166 yards though and the Bears completed only 8 passes, so it’s no surprise Gamble only had an assist.
In the two teams that are AFC oddities this year, the Chiefs hung tough in a 19-9 loss to the Colts, while the Bungels gave one away at home to the Buccaneers 23-20. For the Chiefs, Vrabel had 6 total tackles and clearly is one of the leaders of the resurgent defense, while Donald Washington has become a gunner on the punt unit and made a sweet hit in the second that somehow was left out of the boxscore. Meanwhile, Nugent made both his FG and XP attempts, but Carson Palmer threw 2 picks in the last 3:20, leading to 10 Tampa points and a 23-20 win in the Queen City.
On Monday night, Brett Farve and Randy Moss hogged all the attention, overshadowing the return of Santonio Holmes from his four week break for medicinal purposes. Holmes caught 3 balls for 41 yards, including a key first down late (though the Jets coaches rushed only one more time), while Nick Mangold and Ben Hartstock cleared the way for 155 yards rushing against a tough Minnesota D. Antoine Winfield had just 2 total tackles and The Gun Show was shut out for the second straight week, as New York came out on top 29-20.
In mediocre weeks like this, it is good to step away from the norm and award the Houndie to a Buckeye that has been putting up numbers on a bad team. Donte Whitner once again lead the Bills in tackles, with 10 solo tackles and an assist in their 26-36 home loss to Jacksonville. Whitner also got a fumble recovery when the Bills were still down 7 in the 3rd quarter. On the season, Donte is tied for 7th in the league with 46 tackles and has 34 in his last 3 games. The Bills are still winless on the year, but have shown some recent life on offense. The defense is obviously bad, but the lone birght spot has been Whitner.