PITTSBURGH – Pitt sophomore safety Paris Ford and junior defensive end Patrick Jones II were honored Monday by the Atlantic Coast Conference for their performances in the Panthers’ 33-30 victory at Duke.
Ford was selected as the Defensive Back of the Week, while Jones was honored as the Defensive Lineman of the Week.
Ford played perhaps the most impactful game of his Pitt career, collecting a game- and career-high 12 tackles (eight solo) and intercepting two passes. He returned his initial interception 26 yards for a touchdown, the Panthers’ first “pick six” since 2016.
Just two plays after his TD, Ford intercepted Duke again and Pitt parlayed the turnover into a field goal. Ford is the first Pitt player with multiple interceptions in a game since 2013 (Ray Vinopal, two INTs vs. Notre Dame). Through six contests this season, he leads the Panthers in tackles (45) and interceptions (two).
Jones strip-sacked Duke quarterback Quentin Harris twice. His first sack jarred the ball loose at the Duke 7 and Pitt cashed in two plays later with a touchdown in the third.
After Pitt went ahead late, Jones stripped Harris again and Pitt recovered to seal the result.
For the game, Jones posted career-high totals with six tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles.
Through six games, Jones has been officially credited with 12 quarterback hurries. According to Pro Football Focus, the Pitt defensive end has pressured opposing quarterbacks on 33 passing plays this season, giving him seven more pressures than any other defender in the ACC and ranking him second in the nation for quarterback pressures.