With 233 former Big Ten standouts on the opening day rosters of National Football League (NFL) teams, conference student-athletes have a major impact on the road to the Super Bowl. Every Wednesday, the Big Ten football blog will highlight the top conference performers in the previous week of NFL action. Below is the list of top performers from the previous week.
Cliff Avril, DE, Detroit (Purdue): Recorded a tackle, a sack and a forced fumble as the Lions lost to Chicago, 48-24.
Marion Barber, RB, Dallas (Minnesota): On 11 carries, rushed for 41 yards and a touchdown in the Cowboys' 17-10 loss to the Broncos.
Tom Brady, QB, New England (Michigan): Completed 21 of 32 for 258 yards and a touchdown in the Patriots' 27-21 victory over the Baltimore Ravens.
Chris Chambers, WR, San Diego (Wisconsin): Caught four passes for 39 yards and a touchdown in the Chargers' 38-28 loss to Pittsburgh.
Kerry Collins, QB, Tennessee (Penn State): Was 29 of 48 for 284 yards, with one passing touchdown and a rushing touchdown, in a 37-17 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Kellen Davis, TE, Chicago (Michigan State): Had two catches for 20 yards and a touchdown as the Bears defeated the Detroit Lions, 48-24.
Vontae Davis, CB, Miami (Illinois): Had two tackles with an interception that was returned for a touchdown in the Dolphins' 38-10 win against Buffalo.
Tamba Hali, LB, Kansas City (Penn State): Recorded six tackles, one sack and a forced fumble in the Chiefs' 27-16 loss to the New York Giants.
Leon Hall, CB, Cincinnati (Michigan): Recorded six tackles and forced a fumble in the Bengals' 23-20 overtime win
Brian Hartline, WR, Miami (Ohio State): Caught two passes for 17 yards and a touchdown in Miami's 38-10 win over Buffalo.
Renaldo Hill, S, Denver (Michigan State): Had three tackles, a sack and a forced fumble in the Broncos' 17-10 win over the Dallas Cowboys.
DeAndre Levy, LB, Detroit (Wisconsin): Recorded eight tackles and forced a fumble in the Lions' 48-24 loss to Chicago.
Derrick Mason, WR, Baltimore (Michigan State): Had seven receptions for 88 yards and a touchdown in the Ravens' 27-21 loss to New England.
Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Pittsburgh (Illinois): Rushed for 165 yards and two touchdowns on 29 carries in leading the Steelers to a 38-28 win over the San Diego Chargers.
Adawale Ogunleye, DE, Chicago (Indiana): Had four tackles and 2.5 sacks in the Bears' 48-24 victory over the Detroit Lions.
Kyle Orton, QB, Denver (Purdue): Finished the day 20 of 29 for 243 yards and two touchdown passes as the Broncos beat the Dallas Cowboys, 17-10.
Nick Roach, LB, Chicago (Northwestern): Made seven tackles and recorded a sack in the Bears' 48-24 win against Detroit.
Will Smith, DE, New Orleans (Ohio State): Made four tackles and had two sacks as the Saints defeated the New York Jets, 24-10.
Pierre Thomas, RB, New Orleans (Illinois): Rushed for 86 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries and caught four passes for 46 yards in the Saints 24-10 win over the Jets.
Cameron Wake, LB, Miami (Penn State): Recorded six tackles and three sacks as the Dolphins defeated the Bills, 38-10.
Antoine Winfield, CB, Minnesota (Ohio State): Made nine tackles and had an interception in the Vikings' 30-23 victory over Green Bay on Monday night.