Hawkeyes in the NFL | Week 3

Former Hawkeyes Micah Hyde, Christian Kirksey and George Kittle all turned in impressive performances during the third week of the NFL season.



San Francisco 49ers’ George Kittle (85) makes a catch against Jacksonville Jaguars’ Barry Church (42) in the first quarter at Levi’s Stadium Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017 in Santa Clara, California.

Chris Werner, Sports Reporter

Former Iowa players made plays across the league during Week 3 of the 2021 NFL season. Three former Hawkeyes turned in particularly impressive performances: George Kittle, Micah Hyde, and Christian Kirksey. 

George Kittle, Tight End University

As part of a long-standing tradition, each week on “Sunday Night Football” the starters for each team introduce themselves in a short video clip. The players say their names and the college they went to. But some players have had a bit of fun with their introductions in the past few seasons.

For instance, in 2019 former Ravens linebacker Matthew Judon introduced himself as “Matthew Judon, body built by Taco Bell.” Or Russell Okung, a Chargers’ offensive lineman, announcing that he once attended Wakanda Tech before beginning his NFL career. 

Before his Sunday night contest against the Packers, former Iowa tight end George Kittle put his own spin on the tradition. 

As his video popped up onto the bottom of NBC’s weekly matchup, Kittle introduced himself and then proclaimed his allegiance to Tight End University. 

His intro spread throughout the Iowa Hawkeyes Twitterverse rapidly with fans quote tweeting the original post with statements like “The People’s tight end” or Perfection. 

In the game, Kittle led the 49ers in both receptions and yards with 7 and 92, respectively. 

Kittle hauled in a pivotal 39-yard reception late in the fourth quarter to help the 49ers drive down the field for a go-ahead touchdown with 37 seconds remaining.

Thirty-seven seconds, however, was just enough time for Aaron Rodgers to drive the Packers to the San Francisco 33 yard-line to set up a last-second game-winning 51-yard field goal from Mason Crosby. 

The 30-28 defeat was the first 49ers loss of the season. 

Micah Hyde records INT

In the Buffalo Bills 43-21 rout of the Washington Football Team, Buffalo safety and former Iowa standout Micah Hyde picked off his first pass of the season. 

With just over three minutes left in the third quarter, on a 3rd and 13 play from his own 9-yard line, Washington quarterback Taylor Heinicke evaded pressure in the pocket to extend the play long enough to fire a bullet pass over the middle of the field intended for Adam Humphries.

Hyde stepped in front of the ball and caught it at the Washington 29 yard-line. Hyde ran the ball back into the red zone before he was tripped up by Heinicke at the 17 yard-line. 

Hyde’s pick set up a 29-yard field goal for Bills kicker Tyler Bass. 

Kirksey accounts for double-digit tackles

On Thursday night football, former Hawkeye linebacker Christian Kirksey was second on his Texans team in tackles. He accounted for 10 stops, including seven solo efforts. 

Kirksey has the second-most tackles for Houston this season, tallying 22 in the first three games of the year, just six behind team-leader Zach Cunningham. Desmond King, another former star at Iowa, is sixth with 11 stops.  

Kirksey has three tackles for loss, an interception, and a fumble recovery already this year. 

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