Brent Yarina, BTN.com Senior Editor, October 4, 2011
Week 4 of the NFL season is in the books. As was the case the first three weeks, former Big Ten players once again compiled plenty of big days. All season long, use our Big Ten NFL Stat Tracker to see how ex-Big Ten stars performed each week. Simply click on a player's name, and the link will lead you to his NFL.com game log. Every Tuesday morning, Brent Yarina will single out the Big Ten's best offensive, defensive and special teams performances. See his Week 4 winners in this post.
Offense: Beanie Wells, Arizona – Nursing a sore hamstring that kept him out of the previous week's game, Wells set career highs in carries (27), yards (138) and touchdowns (3) in Arizona's 31-27 heartbreaking loss to the New York Giants. In all of his games this season, the Ohio State product has scored a touchdown and rushed for at least 90 yards. Minnesota product Eric Decker added two more touchdowns and 56 receiving yards in Denver's 49-23 loss at Green Bay.
Defense: Bobby Carpenter, Detroit – At the time, Carpenter's 34-yard interception return for a touchdown seemed inconsequential. When all was said and done, though, the former Buckeye star's pick-6 ignited Detroit's second-half rally from a 27-3 deficit at Dallas. Carpenter's play, which cut the margin to 27-10, was the first score in the team's 31-point outburst in the final 25 minutes and it helped keep the Lions perfect on the season. For good measure, Carpenter also added six tackles against his former team. Michigan products Charles Woodson and David Harris also took interceptions back to the house this week, the former doing it for the 11th time, one shy of tying the NFL record.
Special Teams: Mike Nugent, Cincinnati – The Ohio State product's 43-yard field goal on the final play of the game knocked surprising Buffalo from the ranks of the unbeaten and gave Cincinnati a 23-20 victory. Nugent was perfect in the comeback victory, hitting both extra points and all three field goals, on his way to scoring 11 points. Former Penn State kicker Robbie Gould stayed perfect on the season, hitting a pair of field goals and four extra points, in Chicago's win over Carolina.
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Want more coverage of Big Ten products in the NFL? Check out "The Next Level" at 7 p.m. every Tuesday to hear Rick Pizzo, Russ Lande, Brandon Williams and Jon Jansen talk about Big Ten players on the NFL radar. Tonight, the crew takes a look at Russell Wilson's NFL prospects, talks to Michigan State's Jerel Worthy, catches up with Big Ten products with the Chicago Bears and charts out the accomplishments of Purdue product Ryan Kerrigan, who was named the NFL?s Defensive Rookie of the Month. You can follow the show on Twitter @BTNNextLevel.