Former Scarlet Knights on NFL Rosters as Season Begins
Added by Gregg Snyder on September 5, 2013.
Logan Ryan catches a ball during training camp with the New England Patriots. (Photo Credit: nesn.com)
The 2013 NFL season begins tonight when the Denver Broncos host the defending Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens. Former Rutgers star Ray Rice is once again center stage as one of the leagues top running backs. Some analysts are expecting a drop off in the all-purpose star, as he’s a year older and the Ravens do not have the team they have had in the past. Rice will again be counted on to be a huge piece to the offensive game plan for Baltimore.
The New England Patriots will once again have a handful of former Scarlet Knights players on it’s active roster. Devin McCourty moves to safety after playing at cornerback since being drafted. McCourty is one of the starters at the position for New England. He will also serve as the teams primary kick returner.
The Patriots added three other former Knights this season, drafting linebacker Steve Beauharnais, cornerback Logan Ryan, and safety Duron Harmon. All three have made the team. Beauharnais is currently listed as the backup linebacker behind Jerod Mayo. Harmon was impressive throughout training camp and the preseason and is the backup safety behind Steve Gregory, while Ryan is a third string corner.
Cornerback Marcus Cooper was cut by the San Francisco 49ers at the end of training camp. He was quickly picked up by the Kansas City Chiefs and is now listed as the backup left corner behind Brandon Flowers.
In Tampa Bay, former Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano has six former Knights on his current roster. Jeremy Zuttah will anchor the offensive line, returning to his role as the starting center. Brian Leonard has come over from the Cincinnati Bengals and is the backup running back behind Doug Martin. Tim Wright is a former wide receiver from Rutgers. Quickly after entering camp with the Bucs, Wright switched to tight end. He is currently the fourth string tight end. Gary Gibson is listed as the backup defensive tackle behind Akeem Spence. Defensive lineman Marvin Booker is on the Reserved/Injured List while linebacker Ka’Lial Glaud is on the practice squad.
Kenny Britt has the potential for a big season. The former Rutgers star is the No. 2 wide receiver for the Tennessee Titans. He will line up across the field from Nate Washington and give Titans QB Jake Locker a large target to throw to. Britt has had his issues with the law and his own health, but when on the field, he has been productive.
Also in Tennessee is Jason McCourty, a starting left cornerback. McCourty has become one of the teams’ best defenders.
The Cincinnati Bengals may have lost Leonard to Tampa Bay, but they do still have two former Knights on the active roster and both should make immediate impact. Clark Harris once again is set to handle the long snapping duties. Wide receiver Mohamed Sanu has worked his way up to No. 2 on the depth chart behind one of the NFL’s best in A.J. Green. Sanu has proven to be a reliable receiver for QB Andy Dalton and should see plenty of balls thrown his way this season. Sanu beat out Brandon Tate and Marvin Jones for the No. 2 spot.
Up in Buffalo, Jamaal Westerman is the Bills backup weak-side linebacker behind Nigel Bradham.
Joe Lefeged is once again a backup safety for the Indianapolis Colts. He is behind Antoine Bethea on the depth chart. Lefeged is also listed as the teams’ third kick returner.
George Johnson continues to stick around the league, now with the Minnesota Vikings. Johnson is listed as the third string right defensive end as well as third string weak-side linebacker.
Once again starting at right tackle for the defending NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers is Anthony Davis. The 49ers once again have a team capable of making a deep playoff run. Davis and the rest of the offensive line will do their best to protect QB Colin Kaepernick.
Linebacker Jonathan Freeny is down in Miami with the Dolphins and listed as the backup behind Philip Wheeler.
Rutgers all-time best defensive player, Khaseem Greene, is now a member of the Chicago Bears. Greene had a nice training camp and preseason and is currently listed behind one of the games best weak-side linebackers in Lance Briggs.
D.C. Jefferson has gained some attention in Arizona. He is currently listed as the Cardinals backup tight end behind Rob Housler.
After leaving Rutgers early after last season, running back Jawan Jamison was drafted by the Washington Redskins. Unfortunately, Jamison was unable to make the team and was cut after training camp. The shifty back has since been signed to the Redskins practice squad.