Lincoln Riley racked up a lot more credibility this weekend — and not just from Oklahoma’s victory in Fort Worth.
Sunday night, two former Sooner quarterbacks — both Heisman winners, both No. 1 overall picks — rallied their NFL teams to identical 37-34 comeback wins.
Cleveland’s Baker Mayfield certainly needed an outstanding performance after getting benched a week prior against Pittsburgh and getting off to a bad start against Cincinnati.
Mayfield on Sunday started 0-for-5 and threw an interception on his first throw, but rallied himself and his team in true Mayfield fashion.
In a high-octane shootout with LSU Heisman winner and No. 1 pick Joe Burrow, Mayfield broke the franchise record by completing 21 consecutive passes, finished the day with 297 yards on 22-of-28 passing (his only incompletion down the stretch was a spike to stop the clock) and threw five touchdowns. He wrapped up the Browns’ intrastate victory with a game-winning TD throw to Donovan Peoples-Jones with 11 seconds to play.
It was the first game in NFL history with five lead changes in the fourth quarter on touchdown passes.
Then in the Sunday night game, Kyler Murray tried his best to outshine his former OU teammate with a memorable performance against undefeated Seattle.
Murray completed 34-of-48 passes for 360 yards with three touchdowns and one interception and also led the Cardinals with 67 yards and a touchdown on 14 rushing attempts.
Like Mayfield, Murray led his team back to an improbable victory in a shootout with MVP front-runner Russell Wilson.
Murray led the Cardinals on a desperation drive that produced the game-tying field goal from Zane Gonzalez, then led the Cardinals into scoring position again in overtime, but this time Gonzalez missed.
Murray maintained his composure, though. After trailing 10-0, 20-7 and 27-14 in the first half and 34-24 in the fourth quarter, Murray wasn’t bothered by needing one more overtime drive.
After an unlikely interception thrown by Wilson, Murray moved the Cardinals 19 yards into scoring position, giving Gonzalez another opportunity. Gonzalez’ 48-yard field goal with 15 seconds left in OT set off a celebration in the desert — much like the one on the shores of Lake Erie hours earlier.
Both Arizona and Cleveland improved to 5-2 and are now serious playoff contenders for the first time in a long time.
There is a reason Oklahoma is referred to as “QBU” — and the Sooners’ success doesn’t stop at the professional level.
Here’s how the Sooners did in their NFL games in Week 7:
(37-34 W, Seattle)
QB Kyler Murray: Played all 84 snaps as a starter on offense. 14 rushes, 67 yards, 1 TD. Completed 34-of-48 passes for 360 yards and 3 TDs. 1 interception, 0 sacks.
DE Jordan Phillips: Played 27 of 84 snaps as a starter on defense and 5 snaps on special teams. Made 1 tackle.
(18-10 W, NY Jets)
OL Cody Ford: Not Active
OL Daryl Williams: Played all 74 snaps as a starter at right tackle on offense and 8 on special teams.
(37-34 L, Cleveland)
RB Joe Mixon: Not Active.
RB Samaje Perine: Played 19 of 75 snaps as a backup on offense and 16 on special teams. 1 carry, 3 yards. 1 catch, 1 yard.
LB Jordan Evans: Played 22 snaps on special teams.
DE Amani Bledsoe: Played 28 of 52 snaps as a starter on defense and 6 snaps on special teams. Made 1 tackle.
Austin Seibert: Not active.
(37-34 W, Cincinnati)
QB Baker Mayfield: Played 52 of 52 snaps as a starter on offense. 1 rush for -1 yards. Completed 22-of-28 passes for 297 yards, 5 TDs, 1 interception, 0 sacks.
(25-3 L, Washington)
WR CeeDee Lamb: Played 31 of 56 snaps as a backup on offense and 1 snap on special teams. 5 targets, 0 catches. 1 rush, 1 yard. 1 punt return, 0 yards.
DT Neville Gallimore: Played 38 of 69 snaps as a starter on defense. 4 tackle, 1 tackle for loss.
TE Blake Bell: Played 20 of 56 snaps as a starter on offense and 6 snaps on special teams.
S Steven Parker: Played 25 of 69 snaps as a backup on defense and 11 on special teams. Made 3 tackles.
(23-22 W, Atlanta)
RB Adrian Peterson: Played 19 of 62 snaps on offense as a starter. 11 carries, 29 yards rushing. 1 target, 1 catch, 1 yard.
(35-20 L, Green Bay)
WR Kenny Stills: Played 22 of 68 snaps on offense as a backup. 4 target, 2 catches, 34 yards.
(39-29 L, LA Chargers)
WR Dede Westbrook: Played 11 snaps on special teams. 3 punt returns, 36 yards. 4 kickoff returns, 89 yards. 1 fumble lost. Suffered gruesome knee injury on KO return on final play of third quarter. Out for the season.
Kansas City Chiefs
(43-16 W, Denver)
LS James Winchester: Played 11 snaps on special teams. Perfect on 8 placekicks and 3 punts.
Los Angeles Chargers
(39-29 W, Chicago)
LB Kenneth Murray: Played all 63 snaps as a starter on defense and 1 snap on special teams. 5 tackles (3 solo), 1 pass defensed.
Los Angeles Rams
(24-10 W, Chicago)
OL Bobby Evans: Did not play.
LB Ogbonnia Okoronkwo: Injured reserve.
New York Giants
(22-21 L, Philadelphia)
WR Sterling Shepard: Played 46 of 60 snaps as a starter on offense. 8 targets, 6 catches, 59 yards, 1 TD.
(22-21 W, NY Giants)
QB Jalen Hurts: Played 5 of 81 snaps as a backup on offense. 2 carries, 2 yards.
T Lane Johnson: Played 60 of 81 snaps as a starter on offense. Injured during the second play of the fourth quarter. Did not return.
San Francisco 49ers
(33-6 W, New England)
OL Trent Williams: Played all 66 snaps as a starter at left tackle.
CB Parnell Motley: Did not play; released on Monday.
Washington Football Team
(25-3 W, Dallas)
WR Jeff Badet: Played 3 snaps as a backup on offense. Made his NFL debut on Sunday.
P Tress Way: Played 6 snaps on special teams. Held on placekicks. 2 punts, 76 yards.