In a Shakespeare-inspired NFL Africa Zone this week, several African players continued to show increased comfort and familiarity with their respective teams.
O, Player of the Week...eth
After getting cracking the nod for the Africa Zone notable performance list last week, Lagos-born Romeo Okwara made the step up against the Green Bay Packers. The defensive end out of the University of Notre Dame continues to repay the Lions for signing him after the New York Giants released him after pre-season.
He also played in all but eight of the Lions' defensive snaps for a total of 90 percent on Sunday. The amount of time Okwara spent on the field shows his comfort in the Lions' defensive scheme, as well as his ability to play on both running and passing downs.
Without the injured Ziggy Ansah, Okwara and his fellow defensive ends will need to provide increased QB pressure, as they're a unit that has struggled to provide pressure consistently, despite accumulating sacks.
Thy Notable Performances
How can the Rams be stopped?
Ryan Clark says the Rams find a way to pick teams apart on offense and Jeff Saturday lauds their defense for shutting the door when it needs to.
Another week and another strong defensive performance from the Rams defensive interior. Cameroonian-American Suh had seven tackles, one sack, one tackle for a loss, and one QB hit in the Rams' 33-31 win over the Seattle Seahawks.
Suh engaged in an excellent battle with Seahawks Right Guard D.J. Fluker and even found himself pancaked on a Seahawks run play during the game. Then Suh took over and had two sacks in one series (one of which was called back), provided pressure on Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, and caused a holding penalty on the Seahawks.
Despite the rough night for the Rams defense (victory masked some unusually subpar play), their defensive interior continues to stand out this season, and opposition players will need to quickly figure out how to stop the 5-0 side.
As he continues to get more reps on the field, playing in 95% of the Cardinals' 98 defensive snaps on Sunday, Benwikere gets more opportunities to play up to his mantra, "TUoffTOz" AKA Turn Up off Turnovers.
As the Cardinals settle down under new coach Steve Wilks and defensive coordinator Al Holcomb, Benwikere's knowledge and ability to play in the defensive scheme will go a long way to solidifying the cornerback spot on the other side of All-Pro Patrick Peterson.
As the Atlanta Falcons suffered another big loss in their 41-17 defeat to the Pittsburgh Steelers, one of the few bright spots was receiver Mo Sanu. The Sierra-Leonean-American caught four passes for 73 yards and one touchdown on Sunday.
The 43-yard touchdown reception (Mostly YAC on the play) was Sanu's first ever touchdown in nine games against the Steelers, and was also the longest touchdown reception of his Falcons career so far.
Players Thou Shalt Watch in Week 6
Njoku was decent against the Ravens on Sunday, with six catches on 11 targets. This coming Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers, Njoku will need to continue showing secure hands as he provides QB Baker Mayfield with another option to move the chains and provide help in the red zone.
Enunwa had a difficult week five as he battled through a hip injury, before getting on the field against the Denver Broncos and failing to catch any of the five passes thrown his way in the Jets' win. This week, Enunwa and the Jets take on the Indianapolis Colts and their less than impressive secondary.
Eli Apple (New York Giants Cornerback) vs. Eagles
The Ghanaian-American cornerback has had a good redemption season so far, and had five tackles and a forced fumble in week 5. On Thursday, Apple and the Giants will take on division rivals Philadelphia and their wide receivers, including Nigerian-American Nelson Agholor. Apple will need to be on his game in order to give the Giants secondary a boost as they seek their second win on the season.