Cougars in the Pros -- Week Nine

On the season, Ryan Denney ranks third on the Bills with three sacks and ranks second among Bills defensive linemen with 27 tackles.

Former BYU defensive heavyweights Ryan Denney and Brady Poppinga faced off from opposing sidelines in week nine of the NFL season and the veteran Denney came out victorious. Denney, in his sixth season with Buffalo, recorded four tackles, including two solo takedowns, and added a quarterback hurry from his defensive end position in the Bills' 24-10 victory over Green Bay. On the season, Denney ranks third on the Bills with three sacks and ranks second among Bills defensive linemen with 27 tackles. Poppinga, in his second season and not one to be outdone, started and registered five tackles, including four solo takedowns, in a losing effort. Poppinga's five total and four solo tackles ranked him second on the Packers. On the season, Poppinga ranks sixth in tackles and tied for second in interceptions on the Packers defensive unit.

NFL head coaches with BYU roots were perfect in week nine. Head coach Brian Billick saw his Baltimore Ravens edge Cincinnati 26-20 to improve to 6-2 and remain in first place in the AFC North. Rookie full back Fahu Tahi is on the Bengals' practice squad. Meanwhile, head coach Mike Holmgren's Seattle Seahawks shutout Oakland 16-0 on Monday Night Football to improve to 5-3 and remain in first place in the NFC West. Seattle tight end Itula Mili recorded one reception for five yards in the victory. Jim Lind, who coached at BYU with Holmgren, is Seattle's tight ends coach. Head coach Andy Reid's Philadelphia Eagles were idle in week nine. Former BYU Cougars Reno Mahe (RB) and Scott Young (OL) have helped the Eagles' offense rank third in the NFC in scoring through week nine.

Defensive end Brett Keisel started and nose tackle Chris Hoke saw action for defending Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh in the Steelers' 31-20 loss to Denver. Keisel recorded one tackle in the loss. Fellow former Cougar and current Pittsburgh defensive lineman Shaun Nua is on the Steelers' practice squad.

John Denney's Miami Dolphins ended Chicago's hopes of an undefeated season by shocking the Bears 31-13 at Soldier Field. Denney serves as the Dolphins' long snapper on special teams. Chicago offensive lineman John Tait started and tight end Gabe Reid saw action for Chicago in a losing effort. Tait has started all eight games for Chicago this season.

The Indianapolis Colts, in contrast, were able to remain unbeaten by downing New England 27-20. Colts linebacker and special teams standout Rob Morris did not play in week nine due to a hamstring injury.

The New Orleans Saints beat Tampa Bay 31-14 in a battle of NFC South squads. Offensive lineman Ben Archibald is on the Saints' practice squad. Tight end Doug Jolley saw action for the Bucs in the loss. In a similar battle of AFC South teams, Jacksonville beat Tennessee 37-7. Titans linebacker Colby Bockwoldt recorded one solo tackle in a losing effort. Tennessee coach Norm Chow is in his second season as offensive coordinator.

Offensive lineman Scott Jackson's Houston Texans were narrowly defeated 14-10 by the New York Giants. Jackson was inactive in week nine. The Arizona Cardinals and safety Aaron Francisco were idle in week nine. Rookie wide receiver Todd Watkins is on the Cardinals' practice squad.

Tags: Feature