Across the Shield: Ezekiel Elliott Scores Twice in Ohio Homecoming While Michael Thomas, Terrelle Pryor and Jalin Marshall Find Paydirt

By Kevin Harrish on November 7, 2016 at 10:10a
Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports
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Once a Buckeye, always a Buckeye. Across the Shield follows those who once wore Scarlet and Gray on their journeys through the NFL.

Homecoming

Sunday, Ezekiel Elliott played his first game inside the Buckeye state since his time at Ohio State when the Cowboys visited the Browns in Cleveland.

In a bittersweet game for many Buckeye fans who root for the Browns on Sundays, Elliott ran all over Cleveland, tallying 18 carries for 92 yards and two touchdowns.

Here's a complete look at Elliott's day:

Elliott sure seemed to enjoy his time back in Ohio. The former Buckeye back flashed an "O-H-I-O" on a number of occasions, including after an acrobatic diving touchdown run.

"Ohio means a lot to me, kind of like a second home," Elliott said after the game. "Just the memories I had here and the friends I made while at Ohio State and just the other things I accomplished at that great university. Ohio means a lot to me so it was very important for me to come here, have a good game and play in front of these great fans."

Pryor Keeps it Positive

On the flip side of Elliott's thunderous return to the Buckeye state was Terrelle Pryor.

Pryor has been one of the few brights spots of the Browns' winless 2016 campaign, and he continues to remain shockingly optimistic week after week. Sunday's game against Dallas was no different.

Of course, there was no upset. In fact, the Browns didn't even come close to beating the 7.5 point spread (why didn't somebody tell me about this line before the game), as they suffered 35-10 home beatdown.

Pryor did score the Browns only touchdown though, which is emblematic of Cleveland's entire season.

Can't Guard Mike

Weekly reminder: Michael Thomas is an absolute freak.

The former Buckeye had his first multi-touchdown touchdown game Sunday, finishing with five catches for 73 yards and two touchdowns.

The clip you just watched is far from the most impressive thing Thomas did Sunday afternoon, but we'll get to that in a bit.

Thomas leads all rookies with 573 yards receiving and five touchdowns. He's on pace to rack up over 1,000 yards receiving in his first season in the NFL.

It Feels Like the First Time

Jalin Marshall had the best game of his young NFL career Sunday afternoon, finishing with three catches for 59 yards and his first professional touchdown. Marshall also had 10 yards in punt return yardage.

If you haven't noticed by now, the NFL's social media policy is bad and it makes finding and sharing videos quite difficult. So I give to you two pretty horrible looks at Marshall's touchdown in hopes that you can piece together enough information to imagine it beautifully in your mind.

Marshall earned his spot on the roster as the Jets' starting return man and soon found his way into the receiver rotation.

Of course, his day wouldn't be complete without some sort of adventure. Naturally, the Buckeye put the ball on the turf once during the game, although he was lucky enough to recover it himself.

Play of the Week

Michael Thomas made an absolute circus catch for a 34-yard touchdown Sunday afternoon.

Drew Brees threw up a deep ball for Thomas in the corner of the end zone and the former Buckeye wideout reached behind 49ers cornerback Tramaine Brock to try to make a play.

After a series of bounces, the ball ended up in Thomas' hands for a touchdown.

"I don't know what it hit," Thomas said after the game. "I know it hit my hands, and I got 6 points."

The catch will undoubtably look familiar to Buckeye fans who watched Noah Brown do something similar during Ohio State's win against Oklahoma earlier this year.

What can Brown do for you?

"That was just being Mike. Money-making Mike. Can't guard Mike," Former Buckeye teammate Vonn Bell said after the game. "That's what he does."

Just another day at the office.

Ohio Against the World

Things are looking bleak, folks.

Another week, another loss. After this week, I will be 0-9 on the season.

Although you could argue that if Carlos Hyde was healthy and Mike Nugent weren't on a BYE, I would have won this matchup handily (I would not have won). 

Week 9

I need a big game out of Nick Vannett tonight to pull out a win. Let's do this.

Buckeyes in the NFL: Week Nine
Player Position Team Stats
Cardale Jones QB Buffalo Bills Monday Night
Adolphus Washington DT Buffalo Bills Monday Night
Philly Brown WR Carolina Panthers 1 catch for 11 yards
Kurt Coleman S Carolina Panthers 7 total tackles
Ted Ginn Jr. WR Carolina Panthers 5 catches for 40 yards
Andrew Norwell OL Carolina Panthers Started
Mike Adams OL Chicago Bears DNP
Mike Nugent K Cincinnati Bengals BYE
Terrelle Pryor WR Cleveland Browns 5 catches for 47 yards and a touchdown
Ezekiel Elliott RB Dallas Cowboys 18 carries for 92 yards and 2 touchdowns, 1 catch for five yards
Rod Smith RB Dallas Cowboys Played but did not generate stats.
Jeff Heuerman TE Denver Broncos Played but did not generate stats
Bradley Roby CB Denver Broncos Led team with 9 tackles and had 1 sack
Taylor Decker OL Detroit Lions DNP
Corey Linsley OL Green Bay Packers Started
Braxton Miller WR Houston Texans BYE
John Simon LB Houston Texans BYE
Jack Mewhort OL Indianapolis Colts DNP, Injured
Michael Bennett *** DT Jacksonville Jaguars DNP, Injured
Jake McQuaide LS Los Angeles Rams Started
Alex Boone OL Minnesota Vikings Started
Nate Ebner DB New England Patriots BYE
Vonn Bell S New Orleans Saints 6 total tackles, 0.5 sacks and a fumble recovery
James Laurinaitis LB New Orleans Saints DNP, Injured
Michael Thomas WR New Orleans Saints 5 catches for 73 yards and 2 touchdowns
Eli Apple CB New York Giants 4 total tackles
Johnathan Hankins DT New York Giants 2 total tackles
Darron Lee LB New York Jets DNP, Injured
Nick Mangold C New York Jets DNP, Injured
Jalin Marshall WR New York Jets 3 catches for 59 yards and a touchdown, 2 punt returns for 10 yards
Devin Smith *** WR New York Jets DNP, Injured
Malcolm Jenkins S Philadelphia Eagles 3 total tackles
Cameron Heyward DE Pittsburgh Steelers 2 total tackles, 1 tackle for a loss
Ryan Shazier LB Pittsburgh Steelers 9 total tackles, 0.5 tackles for a loss
Joey Bosa DE San Diego Chargers 1 total tackle
Joshua Perry LB San Diego Chargers 1 total tackle
Carlos Hyde RB San Francisco 49ers DNP, Injured
Tyvis Powell S Seattle Seahawks Monday Night
Nick Vannett TE Seattle Seahawks Monday Night
Donte Whitner S Washington Redskins BYE

***Player listed as "Injured/Physically Unable to Perform"

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