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Michigan alumni update: Maurice Hurst leads all rookie DTs with 4 sacks

Hurst continues to disrupt in his first season in Oakland. That and more in this Week 11 update.

Oakland Raiders v Arizona Cardinals Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images

Fifth-round Oakland draft pick Maurice Hurst continued to play like a first-rounder Sunday, notching his fourth sack of the season in a 23-21 Raider victory over the Arizona Cardinals.

The No. 140 pick in last spring’s NFL Draft is leading all rookie defensive tackles in sacks. In fact, the interior lineman is tied for third among all rookies.

With six games left, he is on pace to surpass the four sacks from 2014 Oakland first-round linebacker Khalil Mack.

Mack just signed a six-year, $141 million deal with the Chicago Bears. A few years of this production could mean a similarly lucrative deal for Hurst.

He lined up across Arizona rookie center Mason Cole, and tallied five total tackles against his former Wolverine teammate. That gives him 26 total stops on the year.

Speaking of Cole, he is already the leader on a very young Cardinal front five.

It’s early in the development process for him and his peers. The Cardinals have allowed 28 sacks (13th-worst in the league) and are dead last in rushing yards per game.

Cole and company coped better against the Raiders, rushing for five yards a pop and only allowing the one sack to Hurst.

Just like last week, Seattle weak-side defensive end Frank Clark is racking up sacks in Pete Carroll’s defense. In the Seahawks’ 27-24 triumph Thursday over the Green Bay Packers, he tacked on two sacks among four combined tackles.

The fourth-year player is now tied for fourth in the league with 10 sacks, seated alongside NFL luminaries such as Von Miller and the Watt brothers.

He’s proven to be mostly a pass-specialist in 2018, as he only has 21 tackles outside of his sack total. He’s also recorded a pick and three forced fumbles.


“We had him working (multiple positions),” Marrone said to The Florida Times-Union. “If you are bringing someone in and they come from a similar system, then you can do that. They are able to pick things up a lot quicker. If it is something completely opposite of a system – there (are) probably three types of systems in the NFL – if you do something like that, then it is a little bit tougher.”

The early returns on the ground were strong, as Jacksonville racked up 179 yards in a 20-16 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Jaguars reserve safety Jarrod Wilson chipped in a tackle.

  • Both starting defensive end Taco Charlton and nickel Jourdan Lewis for the Cowboys didn’t see the field in a 22-19 Dallas victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

The former is due to a lingering shoulder injury. It’s yet to be seen if he’s done for the year.

  • Carolina receiver Devin Funchess snared two balls for 39 yards in the Panther’s 20-19 defeat to the Detroit Lions. He leads the team with 41 receptions for 516 yards, adding three scores.
  • The following four defenders each made a single stop last weekend: Blake Countess for the Los Angeles Rams, Chris Wormley for the Baltimore Ravens, Leon Hall for the Raiders and Brandon Graham for the Philadelphia Eagles.

Wormley, for what’s it worth, is in the rivalry week spirit.

  • Minnesota Vikings linebacker Ben Gedeon saw the field more often in Sunday night’s 25-20 loss to the Chicago Bears.

He recorded three tackles from his nickel linebacker spot, giving him 21 on the year.

Vikings punter Matt Wile booted four punts for 178 yards (44.5 average), placing two inside the 20-yard line.

He remains in the top-10 in the league in pinning opponents behind the 20, as he has 20 on the year.