Across The Shield: Chris Olave Makes Another Spectacular Catch in Second 100-Yard Game of Season, C.J. Stroud’s Historically Great Start Continues with First NFL Win

By Dan Hope on September 26, 2023 at 10:10 am
Chris Olave
Jeff Hanisch – USA TODAY Sports

Chris Olave did it again.

For the second week in a row, the former Ohio State receiver made a spectacular catch for the New Orleans Saints. In the final minute of the first half of the Saints’ game against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, Olave made a silky-smooth one-handed catch along the right sideline for a 28-yard gain.

That reception came as part of Olave’s second 100-yard game of the season, as he caught eight passes for 104 yards in Sunday’s game even though Saints starting quarterback Derek Carr was knocked out of the game with a shoulder injury in the third quarter. That wasn’t enough for the Saints to earn a win, as they lost 18-17 after surrendering 18 fourth-quarter points to the Packers, but Olave’s performance was enough to earn our Pro Buck of the Week award for Week 3.

Pro Bucks of the Week
Week Player Stats
Week 1 Saints CB Marshon Lattimore 1 INT, 3 PBU, 2 tackles
Week 2 Texans QB C.J. Stroud 30-47 passing, 384 yards, 2 TD
Week 3 Saints WR Chris Olave 8 catches, 104 yards

(Correction: This article initially stated that it was Olave’s first 100-yard game of the season, but it was actually his second, as he caught eight passes for 112 yards in the Saints’ season opener against the Tennessee Titans.)

Three weeks into his second NFL season, Olave ranks sixth in the league with 302 receiving yards.

Fellow former Ohio State receiver Michael Thomas caught six passes for 50 yards in the Saints’ loss to the Packers, while Pete Werner (11 tackles) and Marshon Lattimore (seven tackles, one pass deflection) were New Orleans’ top two tacklers on the day.

Stroud off to historically great start

C.J. Stroud earned his first win as an NFL quarterback on Sunday as he led the Houston Texans to a surprise 37-17 road victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. The former Ohio State quarterback played a major role in the Texans’ success, completing 20 of his 30 passing attempts for 280 yards and two touchdowns while also running the ball three times for 14 yards.

Through his first three NFL games, Stroud has now completed 78 of 121 passing attempts (64.5%) for 906 yards and four touchdowns with zero interceptions. His 121 attempts without an interception are the most ever for an NFL quarterback through his first three starts.

According to ESPN, Stroud is also the first quarterback in NFL history to have at least 900 passing yards and four passing touchdowns with zero interceptions in his first three career starts. His 906 passing yards are the third-most for an NFL quarterback through three starts behind only Cam Newton (1,012) and Justin Herbert (931).

Stroud received high praise from Texans coach DeMeco Ryans and his teammates after his most recent start on Sunday, giving them reason to celebrate landing Stroud with the No. 2 overall pick in this year’s NFL draft after the Carolina Panthers drafted Bryce Young with the top pick.

"The best thing that happened to the Houston Texans franchise was us beating the Indianapolis Colts last game, last year," Texans tight end Brevin Jordan told ESPN. "We drafted the right guy. Man, he's a leader. He's a phenomenal player and a phenomenal guy with God-given talent. Dude, he's unbelievable."

In addition to celebrating his first NFL win this weekend, Stroud also celebrated watching his former Ohio State teammates beat Notre Dame on Saturday night. Stroud gave shoutouts to Ryan Day, Kyle McCord and the Buckeyes’ defense in his postgame press conference Sunday, and his new Texans teammates from Notre Dame had to pay off a bet by wearing Ohio State gear on Monday.

Zeke runs strong in Patriots win

After rushing for only 42 yards on 12 carries in his first two games as a New England Patriot, Ezekiel Elliott had a strong showing against the New York Jets in Week 3 as he gained 80 yards on 16 carries and also had a 7-yard catch, helping lead the Patriots to their first win of the season in a 15-10 victory.

The former Ohio State running back, who is now preparing to face his former team in Week 4 when the Patriots face the Dallas Cowboys, drew praise after the game from Patriots coach Bill Belichick, who said he thought Elliott “did a nice job of getting his pads down and got some tough yards” while also showing good vision as a ballcarrier.

Garrett Wilson was the Jets’ leading receiver in defeat, catching five passes for 48 yards on a day that Jets quarterback Zach Wilson completed 18 of 36 passing attempts for 157 yards.

Quick hits

  • Former Ohio State teammates Nick Bosa and Sam Hubbard bookended the week by recording their first sacks of the season. Bosa’s first sack of the year came in a Thursday night win for the San Francisco 49ers over the New York Giants, while Hubbard’s came in a Monday night win for the Cincinnati Bengals over the Los Angeles Rams.
  • Curtis Samuel made his longest reception of the season to date as he snagged a 37-yard deep ball from Sam Howell in the Washington Commanders’ loss to the Buffalo Bills.
  • Paris Johnson Jr. led James Conner into the end zone with a strong block on Jayron Kearse, driving the Dallas Cowboys safety out of bounds to clear a path for a 5-yard touchdown run early in the Cardinals’ 28-16 surprise win.
  • The Indianapolis Colts signed Trey Sermon to their active roster before their Week 3 game against the Baltimore Ravens. He carried the ball five times for 17 yards in his Colts debut, a 22-19 overtime win.
  • The Seattle Seahawks released Tyreke Smith on Wednesday, but signed him back to their practice squad on Friday after he cleared waivers.
  • Justin Fields’ struggles to begin his third NFL season continued as he completed just 11 of 22 passing attempts for 99 yards with one touchdown and one interception in the Chicago Bears’ 41-10 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

Full Week 3 and season stats for every Buckeye who has played in at least one NFL game this season and/or is currently on an NFL team’s roster can be found below. The table, which was compiled by Eleven Warriors researcher Matt Gutridge, includes only players who finished their collegiate careers at Ohio State.

Buckeyes Around the NFL
ELI APPLE CB DOLPHINS Played at CB 9 tackles, 2 PD
JEROME BAKER LB DOLPHINS 3 catches, 2 QB hits 15 tackles, 2 QB hits
VONN BELL S PANTHERS 8 tackles 17 tackles, 1 INT, 2 PD
JOEY BOSA DE CHARGERS 1 tackle, 1 sack (7 yards), 1 QB hit, 1 PD 6 tackles, 3 sacks (28 yards), 3 TFL, 3 QB hits, 1 PD
NICK BOSA DE 49ERS 3 tackles, 1 sack (8 yards), 2 QB hits 7 tackles, 1 sack (8 yards), 2 TFL, 6 QB hits
NOAH BROWN WR TEXANS Injured reserve (groin) 3 catches, 20 yards
BARON BROWNING OLB BRONCOS Physically unable to perform Has not played
PARRIS CAMPBELL WR GIANTS 6 catches, 24 yards 11 catches, 47 yards
JONATHON COOPER OLB BRONCOS 7 tackles 18 tackles, 2 sacks (20 yards), 1 FF, 1 TFL, 1 QB hit
TAYLOR DECKER OT LIONS Inactive 1 start at LT
J.K. DOBBINS RB RAVENS Injured reserve (Achilles) 8 carries, 22 yards, 1 TD
EZEKIEL ELLIOTT RB PATRIOTS 16 carries, 80 yards; 1 catch, 7 yards 28 carries, 122 yards; 6 catches, 21 yards
LUKE FARRELL TE JAGUARS 1 catch, 4 yards 1 catch, 4 yards
JUSTIN FIELDS QB BEARS 11/22 passing, 99 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT; 11 carries, 47 yards 51/78 passing, 526 yards, 3 TD, 4 INT; 24 carries, 109 yards, 1 TD
JORDAN FULLER S RAMS 4 tackles 19 tackles, 1 FF
DaVON HAMILTON DT JAGUARS Injured reserve (back) Has not played
ZACH HARRISON DL FALCONS 4 tackles 10 tackles
CAMERON HEYWARD DT STEELERS Injured reserve (groin) 1 QB hit
RONNIE HICKMAN S BROWNS Inactive 1 game played at S
MALIK HOOKER S COWBOYS 5 tackles 12 tackles, 1 INT, 2 PD
SAM HUBBARD DE BENGALS 6 tackles, 1 sack (8 yards), 2 QB hits 18 tackles, 1 sack (8 yards), 1 TFL, 3 QB hit
JONAH JACKSON OG LIONS Started at LG 3 starts at LG
CAMERON JOHNSTON P TEXANS Injured reserve (calf) Has not played
DAWAND JONES OT BROWNS Started at RT 2 starts at RT, 3 games played
DRE’MONT JONES DE SEAHAWKS 1 tackle 5 tackles, 1 sack (2 yards), 1 TFL, 1 QB hit
MARSHON LATTIMORE CB SAINTS 7 tackles, 1 PD 14 tackles, 1 INT, 6 PD
TYQUAN LEWIS DE COLTS 1 tackle 3 tackles
COREY LINSLEY C CHARGERS Started at C 3 starts at C
LIAM McCULLOUGH LS FALCONS Played at LS 3 games played at LS
TERRY McLAURIN WR COMMANDERS 6 catches, 41 yards 13 receptions, 126 yards, 1 TD
THAYER MUNFORD OT RAIDERS Played at OT 1 start, 3 games played at OT
JOSH MYERS C PACKERS Started at C 3 games started at C
JEFF OKUDAH CB FALCONS Played at CB 1 game played at CB
CHRIS OLAVE WR SAINTS 8 catches, 104 yards 22 catches, 302 yards
ISAIAH PRINCE OT FALCONS Inactive 2 games played
JEREMY RUCKERT TE JETS Played at TE 3 games played
CURTIS SAMUEL WR COMMANDERS 2 catches, 54 yards 10 catches, 127 yards; 2 carries, 19 yards
TREY SERMON RB COLTS 5 carries, 17 yards 5 carries, 17 yards
TYREKE SMITH LB SEAHAWKS Practice squad 1 tackle
JAXON SMITH-NJIGBA WR SEAHAWKS 1 catch, 10 yards 9 catches, 57 yards
C.J. STROUD QB TEXANS 20/30 passing, 280 yards, 2 TD; 3 carries, 14 yards 78/121 passing, 906 yards, 4 TD; 10 carries, 35 yards
MICHAEL THOMAS WR SAINTS 6 catches, 50 yards 18 catches, 166 yards
SHAUN WADE CB PATRIOTS 1 tackle 3 tackles
DENZEL WARD CB BROWNS 4 tackles, 1 TFL, 2 PD 13 tackles, 1 TFL, 5 PD, 1 FF
PETE WERNER LB SAINTS 11 tackles 26 tackles, 0.5 sack (4 yards), 1 QB hit
GARRETT WILSON WR JETS 5 catches, 48 yards 12 catches, 165 yards, 2 TD
LUKE WYPLER C BROWNS Inactive Has not played
CHASE YOUNG DE COMMANDERS 3 tackles, 1 TFL 6 tackles, 1.5 sacks (8 yards), 2 TFL, 2 QB hits
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