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Orange in the NFL: Recapping week 14 for Syracuse football alumni

*Insert pinched fingers emoji*

Green Bay Packers v New York Giants Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images

We’re entering the home stretch of the NFL’s regular season, and former Syracuse Orangemen are making an impact all across the league. Here’s all you need to know about how the SU alums are performing at the professional level.

Garrett Williams, Arizona Cardinals

After beginning the season on the injured reserve, Williams has blossomed into a promising cornerback prospect. He ranks second in tackling grade amongst rookie corners with at least 300 snaps, per Pro Football Focus. The Cardinals were on bye this past week, so Williams will be well-rested for a battle at home against San Francisco on Sunday.

Matthew Bergeron, Atlanta Falcons

Bergeron didn’t allow a sack or hit on Atlanta quarterback Desmond Ridder in a loss to Tampa Bay last week. The left guard and 39th pick in this year’s draft hasn’t allowed a sack since week 10, and only four in 501 pass-blocking snaps all season. He’s seen the second-most action of all rookie offensive linemen with 892 snaps.

Kingsley Jonathan, Buffalo Bills

The defensive lineman filled in on the edge to replace an injured A.J. Epenesa in Buffalo’s win over Kansas City. Jonathan didn’t record any stats in his 10 snaps last Sunday but could be elevated to the starting role if Epenesa isn’t able to suit up against Dallas.

Riley Dixon, Denver Broncos

Dixon was busy in Denver’s latest win over the Chargers, averaging 44.7 yards per punt over his seven boots. Five of those landed inside the opposing 20-yard line, the most by any punter last week.

Ifeatu Melifonwu, Detroit Lions

Melifonwu took snaps at safety for the first time last week since being benched in week 4, making three tackles in a loss to Chicago. His run defense grade of 84.8 against the Bears ranked third out of all safeties in the league last week. The third-year man is also a premier tackler with the fourth-highest tackling grade among all NFL safeties (150 minimum snap count).

Zaire Franklin, Indianapolis Colts

The linebacker continues to leave his mark on games, this time with 14 combined tackles in Indy’s loss to Cincinnati. Franklin leads the NFL with 144 tackles and is four weeks away from taking the crown after he nearly did it last year (fourth most). His next game comes on national television against Pittsburgh on Saturday evening.

Andre Cisco, Jacksonville Jaguars

Cisco had three tackles while allowing one catch for 10 yards in Jacksonville’s loss to Cleveland. He’s currently second on the Jaguars’ defense in interceptions with three and fourth in total tackles with 56 over his 12 games played. The safety will also be in the spotlight this weekend in a battle for the AFC’s #1 seed when the Jags face the Ravens on Sunday Night Football.

Trishton Jackson, Minnesota Vikings

Jackson didn’t see playing time in Minnesota’s win over Las Vegas last Sunday. The return of Justin Jefferson seemed to eliminate any possibility of Jackson taking snaps at wide receiver, but Jefferson re-injured himself in his first game back. With backup quarterback Nick Mullins taking over for benched Josh Dobbs, maybe Jackson will get a chance for some receptions from his former backup practice mate.

Tommy DeVito, New York Giants

The 25-year-old led the Giants to an epic comeback win over the Packers on Monday Night Football. Down by two with under two minutes left, DeVito sparked an 8-play, 57-yard drive to put the G-Men in field goal range. He finished the game with 158 passing yards and a touchdown while also running for 71 yards. Likewise, DeVito earned NFC offensive player of the week honors for his virtuoso performance. The Italian is taking over New York by storm and will have another chance to add to his legend on Sunday in New Orleans.

Justin Pugh, New York Giants

The veteran offensive guard did his job for DeVito, giving the quarterback time to throw with only three pressures allowed in the entire contest. Pugh’s plugging right into New York’s starting rotation since arriving in week 6 and has given up a combined five sacks at the left tackle and left guard positions through eight games.

Sean Tucker, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tucker took the field for five snaps in kick return coverage against Atlanta, but that was it. He still hasn’t touched the ball as a running back since week 3 after amassing 15 carries for 23 yards in his rookie campaign.