Locals in the NFL, Week 10: Moss scores, Johnson feasts in Bills' rout of Jets

Buffalo Bills' Taron Johnson, right, intercepts a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Jets, Sunday, Nov. 14, 2021, in East Rutherford, N.J.

Buffalo Bills' Taron Johnson, right, intercepts a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Jets, Sunday, Nov. 14, 2021, in East Rutherford, N.J. (Frank Franklin II, Associated Press)



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AROUND THE SHIELD — Buffalo's defense was feasting, and a former Weber State standout was at the center of it.

Taron Johnson had four tackles and an interception in the Bills' 45-17 rout of the New York Jets to highlight Week 10 of the 2021 NFL season, when Buffalo (6-3) put on a defensive masterclass against the hapless Jets.

The Bills held New York (2-7) to 5.2 yards per carry — nearly half of Buffalo's 9.1 yards per game under the command of quarterback Josh Allen and including 27 yards and a 1-yard touchdown run from former Utah running back Zack Moss on the ground. But the defensive was just as stout, holding the Jets to 70 net yards rushing.

New York backup quarterback Mike White — filling in for former BYU star Zach Wilson, who continues to recover from a PCL injury — threw for 251 yards, but also had four interceptions before veteran Joe Flacco came in to complete 3-of-3 passes for 47 yards and a 15-yard touchdown to Elijah Moore in the fourth quarter.

By that point, the Bills led 45-10 and the final score was a formality. The result was hardly in doubt.

In rising to the top of the AFC East at 6-3 — ahead of or tied with every AFC team but the Tennessee Titans in the South — the Bills flexed their defensive muscles with a torrent of takeaways.

Every member of the Bills' secondary had a turnover, including four interceptions by Johnson, Jordan Poyer, Tre White and Levi Wallace to along with a forced fumble by Micah Hyde.

"We've been playing with each other for a while now," the former Weber State star told Buffalo's CBS affiliate. "We have that chemistry and it helps us be ready when the time comes. Us being around each other all the time helps."

It started with Johnson, who hauled in his first interception of the season on White's misfire in the first quarter — and the rout was on.

But the biggest turnover was probably the only non-interception of the Bills' five forced, he said: the forced fumble by Hyde.

"That was a huge play," he explained, per WIVB in Buffalo. "I feel like that really swayed the game and really put us in a position to run away with it. I feel like that was the biggest play of the game."

The Bills lead the league with 24 takeaways. And more are to come with a defense that is just hitting its stride.

"I was joking around with Fraz (teammate Leslie Frazier), I said, not the '82 Bears," Hyde said with a laugh. "He thought that was funny. But yeah that's wild."

Here is how other former local high school and college football standouts from Utah performed in Week 10 of the NFL's 2021 season.

San Francisco 31, LA Rams 10

49ers (4-5)

  • Fred Warner, LB, BYU: Starting mike linebacker had eight tackles, one pass breakup:
  • Mitch Wishnowsky, P, Utah: Punted three times for 127 yards (42.3 average) in 14 special-teams snaps.

Rams (7-3)

  • Terrell Burgess, S, Utah: Made one tackle on special teams.
  • Matt Gay, K, Utah/UVU/Orem: Made one field goal of 37 yards, one PAT, three kickoffs.

Miami 22, Baltimore 10

Dolphins (3-7)

  • Eric Rowe, DB, Utah: Totaled four tackles, one pass breakup and a forced fumble in 44 defensive snaps.

Ravens (6-3)

  • Ty'Son Williams, RB, BYU: Active, but did not play.
  • Tyler Huntley, QB, Utah: Played six snaps on special teams.

Kansas City 41, Las Vegas 14

Chiefs (6-4)

  • Daniel Sorensen, S, BYU: Had one pass breakup and a key interception in 27 defensive snaps, eight on special teams.
  • Marcus Kemp, WR, Layton: Caught one pass for 16 yards in 4 offensive snaps, added 20 snaps on special teams.

Raiders (5-4)

  • Dallin Leavitt, S, Utah State: Made five tackles in 23 defensive snaps, 26 on special teams.
  • Andre James, C, Herriman: Starting center played all 54 offensive snaps.
  • Jackson Barton, OT, Utah/Brighton: Inactive for Week 10.

Buffalo 45, NY Jets 17

Bills (6-3)

  • Taron Johnson, CB, Weber State: Starting nickel had four tackles, an interception and a pass breakup in 66 defensive snaps.
  • Zack Moss, RB, Utah: Ran for 27 yards on seven carries, including 1-yard touchdown, in 28 offensive snaps.
  • Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah/Bingham/Snow College: Put on reserve/COVID-19 list for Week 10.

Jets (2-7)

  • Zach Wilson, QB, BYU/Corner Canyon: Inactive for Week 10 (knee).
  • Javelin Guidry, DB, Utah: Played 29 defensive snaps, three on special teams.

Dallas 43, Atlanta 3

Cowboys (7-2)

  • Dalton Schultz, TE, Bingham: Starting tight end caught on epass for 14 yards in 51 offensive snaps, six on special teams.
  • Simi Fehoko, WR, Brighton: Inactive for Week 10.
  • Francis Bernard, LB, Utah/Herriman: Made one tackle in nine defensive snaps, 18 on special teams.

Falcons (4-5)

  • No locals on the active roster.

Indianapolis 23, Jacksonville 17

Colts (5-5)

  • No locals on the active roster.

Jaguars (2-7)

  • Nevin Lawson, CB, Utah State: Played 11 defensive snaps, 16 on special teams.

New England 45, Cleveland 7

Patriots (6-4)

  • Kyle Van Noy, LB, BYU: Starting linebacker had five tackles, a sack, a quarterback hurry and recovered a fumble in 37 defensive snaps.

Browns (5-5)

  • Sione Takitaki, LB, BYU: Starting linebacker had four tackles, including a tackle for loss, in 32 defensive snaps and one tackle in 22 special-teams snaps.

Tennessee 23, New Orleans 21

Saints (5-4)

  • Taysom Hill, QB, BYU: Ran for 23 yards on three carries, threw for 11 yards and added a 15-yard catch in 21 snaps on offense, nine on special teams.
  • Marcus Williams, FS, Utah: Starting free safety made three tackles in 51 defensive snaps.
  • Kaden Elliss, LB, Judge Memorial: Starting linebacker made two tackles in 23 defensive snaps, 26 on special teams.

Titans (8-2)

  • No locals on the active roster.

Washington 29, Tampa Bay 19

Football Team (3-6)

  • Dax Milne, WR, BYU/Bingham: Starting wide receiver caught two passes for 22 yards in 20 offensive snaps with one fumble.
  • Tyler Larsen, C, Utah State/Jordan: Starting center played all 73 offensive snaps.

Buccaneers (6-3)

  • No locals on the active roster.

Carolina 34, Arizona 10

Panthers (5-5)

  • Brady Christensen, OT, BYU/Bountiful: Played 13 snaps on offense, six on special teams.

Cardinals (8-2)

  • Leki Fotu, DT, Utah/Herriman: Made three tackles, including a tackle for loss in 32 offensive snaps, nine on special teams.

Minnesota 27, LA Chargers 20

Vikings (4-5)

  • Nick Vigil, LB, Utah State/Fremont: Starting linebacker had two tackles and a quarterback hurry in 59 defensive snaps, six on special teams.

Chargers (5-4)

  • Michael Davis, CB, BYU: Inactive for Week 10.
  • Kyler Fackrell, LB, Utah State: Made two tackles in 25 defensive snaps, six special teams.
  • Alohi Gilman, S, Orem: Made six tackles in 57 defensive snaps, seven on special teams.

Detroit 16, Pittsburgh 16

Lions (0-8-1)

  • Jamaal Williams, RB, BYU: Inactive for Week 10.
  • John Penisini, DL, Utah/West Jordan/Snow College: Played 14 defensive snaps, four on special teams.
  • Penei Sewell, OT, Desert Hills: Starting right tackle played all 74 offensive snaps, including 29 pass-blocking snaps when he allowed no pressures and no snaps, according to Pro Football Focus.

Steelers (5-3-1)

  • Miles Killebrew, S, Southern Utah: Made one tackle in 11 defensive snaps, 26 on special teams.

Philadelphia 30, Denver 13

Eagles (4-6)

  • Sua Opeta, OG, Weber State/Stansbury: Played seven offensive snaps as a reserve.

Broncos (5-5)

  • Garett Bolles, OT, Utah/Westlake/Snow College: Inactive for Week 10.
  • Tim Patrick, WR, Utah: Starting wide receiver caught three passes for 29 yards in 53 offensive snaps.

Green Bay 17, Seattle 0

Packers (8-2)

  • Jordan Love, QB, Utah State: Active, but did not play.

Seahawks (3-6)

  • Bobby Wagner, LB, Utah State: Starting middle linebacker posted eight tackles in 74 defensive snaps, four on special teams.
  • Bryan Mone, DT, Highland: Totaled four tackles in 50 defensive snaps.
  • Cody Barton, LB, Utah/Brighton: Inactive for Week 10.

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