I am old enough to remember when people were worried about Dalvin Cook… Like, four weeks ago. However, after starting the season slow, or at least for his standards, this is Cook’s second NFL Draft Player of the week honor in the last three weeks!
Though there were many brilliant performances during week six of the college football season, no NFL draft prospect had as big an impact in as big a game as Dalvin Cook did. Cook shouldered the load for Florida State in their top ten match up against Miami, carrying the ball 27 times for 150 yards… The rest of the team’s rushing stats added up to 14 carries for 22 yards… So yeah, Cook’s role in the win was pretty substantial.
Cook has shown consistently that he is a lot more than a home run threat. He does a great job working in between the tackles and he fights for every yard on every down, making the big play a constant possibility. On his longest run of the night, it looked like he was caught for a two or three yard gain, but fought through traffic to bust open for 54 yards.
On top of his incredibly impressive night rushing the football, Dalvin Cook also had one reception for a 59 yard touchdown. There was nothing fancy about the catch or how he got open, as he just leaked out into the backside of the play uncovered, but his insane speed allowed him to outrun the entire Hurricane defense.
Halfway through the season, Dalvin Cook has nearly 800 rushing yards, 345 receiving yards and eight total touchdowns, but that is all including his slow start to begin the season. In the last three weeks, Cook has been AVERAGING 261 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns per game. So it is safe to say that Cook is probably trending upwards…
Other performances to note…
Dede Westbrook, WR, Oklahoma: In a Red River Rivalry game where exactly no defense was played, DeDe Westbrook exploded to post over 200 yards and three touchdowns. The Sooners senior piled up 10 catches on the day while no one else on the team had more than three catches (for 12 yards) or totaled more than 51 yards receiving. Westbrook carried the Sooners passing game by getting open deep consistently as well as showing off his speed after the catch. Westbrook’s biggest problem has been health, but if he can stay upright, the fourth year speedster has many more big games to come.
Josh Carraway, EDGE, TCU: TCU’s defense has not been up to recent standards of late, but in last weekend’s game against Kansas, their senior defensive lineman, Josh Carraway put on a show. The 250 pound edge rusher was exploding off the edge all day to post three sacks and four total tackles for a loss. Carraway is very quick, but also has a nonstop motor that makes him so dangerous on any given play. Carraway is a bit undersized, but if he keeps playing like this it will be impossible not to take notice of him.
Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia: Nick Chubb went into somewhat of a lull after his massive opening week performance, but it would be crazy to have expected right off the bat that he would consistently post rock star numbers after his knee injury. However, Nick Chubb looked to be getting his legs under him against South Carolina as he torched them for two touchdowns. Chubb ran tough all day, breaking tackles consistently and finding yardage and chances to make big plays. I hope that this is a signal that he is healthier, but at the very least it shows that Chubb absolutely has that dog in him that can take over a game at any moment.
Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama: I think it’s time a fat man gets some love. Alabama dismantled a very tough and talented Arkansas team and a large factor in that was the neutralization of their stingy defensive line. Alabama posted over 500 yards off offense, including 260 yards rushing, against Arkansas and it would not have been possible without Cam Robinson. Robinson was playing incredibly well in the pass and run blocking. In the screen game, Robinson was able to show his athletic ability to get down field and make blocks in space. Arkansas was Robinson’s biggest test of the season so far and he continues to indicate he is one of the best linemen in college football.