SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 2: Expect Butler to place many more running backs on their backs before his NFL career is over. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
This week starts a new weekly series about all the Huskies currently in the NFL. I will highlight the good and bad of their weekly performances. Some Players will be starting QB's (I remember when we had a bunch) and some will not even get on the field outside of special teams. This will be a place to keep caught up on players past. If I miss a player or some highlight for someone, feel free to call me out on it. There are a few players that should have significant contributions to their teams this year and those players will usually be highlighted. They include, Jake Locker, Donald Butler, Mason Foster and Dashon Goldson.
I have counted 20 current players listed on an NFL roster. That list may shorten after teams drop to their 53 man rosters. So this list could change as the season goes on. Now for your Sunday Bests.
Jake Locker QB Tennessee Titans
I will start with Jake Locker. As we know, the second year QB was just announced as the opening day starter for the Tennessee Titans. Evidently he has outplayed Seattle favorite Matt Hasselbeck. There have been mixed reviews on Jake so far. But from what I saw last year I believe he will ultimately be successful. Jake is a hard worker and a gamer.
Jake has started out rough in the preseason including going 4-11 in his one start. Hasselbeck though has not looked any better and Tennessee coach Mike Munchak realized it was time to get Jake in there. Barring injury, Jake should start every game this year. We will know come December if Jake is here to stay.
Donald Bulter MLB San Diego Chargers
Bulter currently plays opposite Takeo Spikes at MLB in the Chargers' 3-4 D. Analysts seem to think he will take a larger role as the season goes on, becoming an anchor on defense. Butler appears to be a future leader at the LB position. He posted 80 solo tackles last year. In last weeks game he recorded 6 tackles.
Mason Foster MLB Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Mason is the starting MLB for the Buccaneers. He had just an average rookie year posting 65 solo tackles. He is expected to increase that number in his second year. Mason has 6 tackles so far in the preseason.
Dashon Goldson S San Francisco 49ers
Dashon is the starting FS for the 49ers. He is coming off a great year where he earned his first pro-bowl nod. This also led to him getting the franchise tag, which he ultimately signed and reported to camp. Goldson will have something more to prove this year - that should lead him to getting a very nice contract in the next off-season.
Chris Polk RB Philadelphia Eagles
By now we all know Chris Polk's saga. The War Daddy was thought to be anywhere from a second to fourth round pick. Well, he went undrafted to Philadelphia, where he found himself 4th on the depth chart. The Eagles have liked some of his skills (blocking and receiving), so much though that they have moved him to FB to keep him on the roster. This will keep him off the practice squad, where he would have certainly been claimed by another team in need of a backup. Although I am happy Chris is on a team, I am disappointed he will not initially have the opportunity to prove what he can do running the rock. I don't expect that to last forever and for those of us that watched him know he will make the best of any opportunity. Polk has carried the ball 7 times this year for 12 yards but has 4 catches for 33 yards receiving. Catching the ball will be where his first opportunity will come.
Roy Lewis CB Seattle Seahawks
Roy recently underwent knee surgery. This is on the other knee than the one that cost him the better part of the last two years. They have not said how long Roy will be out. He was battling for serious playing time this so year, so hopefully he can get back soon.
Marcell Reece FB Oakland Raiders
Marcell, who was late to playing football, was switched to FB this year. Last year he played more of hybrid TE. Marcel is an absolute beast. I have always wondered what this guy could have been had he been at UW for 4 or 5 years. Marcel will block, catch and run the ball. He will be a very big part of the Raider offense as his size and speed create matchup nightmares. Reece has not yet showed up on the stat sheet.
Isaiah Stanback WR New York Giants
Isaiah is still pushing to make an NFL roster long term. He has played on multiple teams since graduating from the UW. He is once again fighting for a spot. Time is running out for our former QB and I hope he catches on soon. Isaiah has one catch in each preseason game.
Devin Aguilar WR Tennessee Titans
Devin joined his former QB as an UDFA in Tennesee. Devin is probably a practice squad guy in his first year. Aguilar is from Denver so I have followed him since HS. Devin may not see the field this year.
Khalif Barnes OT Oakland Raiders
Khalif has made a nice career for himself. Drafted by Jacksonville in 2005, he started early in his career. He has played guard and tackle for two teams. Barring injuries he will be an important part of the Raiders run game again this year.
Senio Kelemete OG Arizona Cardinals
Drafted in the 5th round this year Senio should begin his career as a backup. He will have opportunities to work his way into the rotation. A former LT, he has the size to play in the NFL. I do expect him to one day become a starter at guard.
Jermaine Kearse WR Seattle Seahawks
Jermaine, like his former teammate Aguilar, is destined to the practice squad this year. Evidently Kearse had a really nice catch against the Broncos last week. He is big and athletic. I suppose there is a chance he could make a roster this year but my bet would be the practice squad.
Alameda Ta'Amu DT Pittsburgh Steelers
Ta'Amu, drafted in the 4th round by the hated Steelers, was projected to eventually take over for Casey Hampton. The word is that he has been inconsistent and unable to solidify himself in the backup role. I don't think that comes as a real surprise to those of us who have followed him over the years. He has one tackle so far.
Dorson Boyce FB Washington Redskins
Dorson is the backup FB for the Redskins. Last week he had one catch for 9 yards. Most of the work he will get is as a blocker.
Stanley Daniels OG Cleveland Browns
Stanley is probably on the outside looking in. He played 4 games for the Broncos in 2010 but did not make an appearance last year. Stanley Daniels was interviewed for this 2010 story in the Denver Post. This will make you root for him to keep playing a few more years.
Erik Folk K Atlanta Falcons
Erik was a hero a couple times while a Husky, but his is currently the backup to Matt Bryant. Not many kickers make the practice squad and I don't expect Erik to either. Erik doesn't have the leg to be a kicker long term in the NFL. His accuracy is good enough that he might make a team from time to time due to injuries.
D'Andre Goodwin WR
D'Andre spent most of last year on the Broncos practice squad. He got into some games late in the year due to injury. He was recently released by the Broncos he did clear waivers and was placed on the Broncos reserve list.
Austin Sylvester FB Denver Broncos
Austin backs up another Gronkowski in Denver. He will be used primarily as a blocker when he sees the field. He spent last year on the practice squad and could be there again.
Daniel Te'o-Nesheim DE Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Daniel was drafted by the Eagles in 2010 and started the season finale. He spent most of 2011 on the practice squad before being claimed by TB late in the year. He is considered at best a situational pass rusher in TB. He has one tackle this year.
Everette Thompson DE Arizona Cardinals
Signed by the Cardinals on August 5. If they like what they see, I assume he will spend this year on the practice squad.