A new face appears on this week’s HBCU NFL ProFile.
It’s former North Carolina Central offensive lineman Nick Leverett who spent four years with the Eagles before finishing with a graduate transfer year at Rice. After redshirting his freshman year at NCCU, Leverett went on to earn three all-MEAC selections over the next three years.
He went undrafted in 2020 but has hung around with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after they signed him as a free agent.
He got into his first game this season Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts and logged 57 plays at guard in the Bucs’ 38-31 win over Indy. That was 85% of the Bucs’ offensive plays. He helped Tampa Bay put up 368 yards of total offense. Leverett is the HBCU NFL Offensive Player of the Week.
HBCU NFL ProFile – Offense
North Carolina A&T’s Brandon Parker also held his own on the offensive line during the Las Vegas Raiders 36-33 overtime win vs. Dallas on Thanksgiving Day. Parker, starting his sixth game at left tackle, battled Cowboys’ defenders all day protecting Derek Carr. He was in on all 87 offensive plays.
Alabama State product Tytus Howard, who had played at left guard all season, started his first game at left tackle Sunday. In the Texans’ 21-14 loss to the New York Jets, Howard was in on all 57 offensive plays.
HBCU NFL ProFile – Defense
While Leverett was busy helping anchor Tampa Bay’s offense, Indianapolis linebacker Darius Leonard was their biggest worry. Leonard, a SC State product, posted a season-high 15 tackles, 12 solos along with a defended pass and forced fumble in the Colts’ loss. Here are some facts about Leonard’s performance(s) in just his fourth year in the league, courtesy of FanNation’s Jake Arthur.
• It was his single-game season-high in tackles. Leonard’s total tackles and solo tackles are also the most in a single game by any Colts player this season. His solo tackles are tied for the fourth-most by an NFL player in a single game this season.
• The former Bulldog has now reached 500 career tackles, becoming just the sixth player in franchise history to reach that mark.
• The sideline-to-sideline menace passed Gary Brackett (23) for the most games with 10-plus tackles in franchise history.
• His 14 forced fumbles since 2018 are tied for the second-most among linebackers in the NFL.
Hargrave back in the swing
Fellow SC State product Javon Hargrave got his first sack in a few weeks in the Philadelphia Eagles’13-7 to the New York Giants. Hargrave posted his seventh sack of the season. He is currently tied for 19th in the league in sacks.
HBCU NFL ProFile – Special Teams
Tennessee wide receiver/kick returner Chester Rogers had two kickoff returns in the Titans’ loss to New England. He also had one pass reception. The Grambling product had a long return of 26 yards.
HBCU NFL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
– #53 DARIUS LEONARD, LB, Indianapolis (4th season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – In Colts’ 38-31 loss to Tampa Bay, Leonard led Indy with 15 total tackles, 12 solos, one pass defended and forced a fumble. Leonoard played all 67 defensive snaps (100%) and six special teams’ snaps (19%).
– #60 NICK LEVERETT, OG, Tampa Bay (3rd season, NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL) – Leverett was in on 57 plays (85%) on offense in the Bucs’ 38-31 win over Indianapolis. He helped the Buccaneers put up 142 rushing yards and four TDs and 226 passing yards and a score.
– #80 CHESTER ROGERS, WR, Tennessee (5th season, GRAMBLING STATE) – In 36-13 loss to New England, Rogers had one reception for 2 yards on three targets and had 46 yards on two kickoff returns (23.0-yard average). He was in on 15 plays on offense (24%) and eight plays on special teams (29%).
OTHER TOP PERFORMANCES
– #75 BRANDON PARKER, OT, Las Vegas (4th season, NORTH CAROLINA A&T) – In Oakland’s 36-33 OT win vs. Dallas, Parker started at right offense tackle on an offense that rushed for 143 yards and two scores passed for 373 yards and one TD. Raiders’ QB Derek Carr was sacked three for -7 yards. Parker also had a tackle. He was in on all 87 offensive plays (100%) and eight special teams’ plays (19%).
– #72 TERRON ARMSTEAD, OT, New Orleans (9th season, ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF) – In 31-6 loss Buffalo, Armstead started at left offensive tackle on an offense that rushed for just 44 yards and passed for 163 yards. Armstead logged all 57 offensive plays (100%).
– #71 TYTUS HOWARD, OG, Houston (3rd season, ALABAMA STATE) – Started at left tackle in Texans’ 21-14 loss to the NY Jets. The Titans rushed for 96 yards and passed for 158 yards and gave up five sacks to QB Tyrod Taylor. Howard was in on all 57 offensive snaps (100%) and three plays on special teams (12%).
– # 78 TRENT SCOTT, OG, Carolina (3rd season, GRAMBLING STATE) – Started at right guard for Panthers in 33-10 loss to Miami. The Panthers rushed for 64 yards and passed for 179 yards. Scott played all 57 snaps on offense (100%) and two special teams’ snaps (7%).
– #90 GROVER STEWART, DT, Indianapolis (5th season, ALBANY STATE) – In Colts’ 38-31 loss to Tampa Bay, Stewart had one assisted tackle while getting in on 45 defensive plays (67%) and 11 on special teams (35%).
– #97 JAVON HARGRAVE, DT, Philadelphia (6th season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – In 13-7 loss to the NY Giants, Hargrave had two total tackles, one solo with one sack for -8 yards, and two hits on the quarterback. He played on 45 defensive snaps (70%).
–#36 – DANNY JOHNSON, DB, Washington (4th season, SOUTHERN) – In 17-15 win over Seattle, Johnson got in on 23 plays on defense (49%) and nine plays on special teams (38%) without a stat.
– #49 TRENTON CANNON, RB/KR, San Francisco (4th season, VIRGINIA STATE) – In 34-26 win over Minnesota, Cannon did not have a stat while playing 18 snaps on special teams (64%).
– #78 TRENT SCOTT, OL, Carolina (3rd season, NORTH CAROLINA A&T) – In 27-21 loss to Washington, Scott got in on three plays on special teams (12%) without a stat.
– #18 KHADAREL HODGE, WR, Detroit (5th season, PRAIRIE VIEW A&M – In 16-14 loss to Chicago, Hodge had one special teams’ tackle. He got in on three offensive plays (6%) without a stat and nine special teams’ plays (38%).
– #27 BOBBY PRICE, FS, Detroit (1st season, NORFOLK STATE) – In 16-14 loss to Chicago, Price did not have a stat on nine special teams’ plays (38%).
– #7 JAMIE GILLAN, P, Cleveland (3rd season, ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF) – In Browns’ 16-10 loss to Baltimore, Gillan punted six times for 261 yards (43.5-yard average and 37.5-yard net) with a long punt of 52 yards and two downed inside the 20. Gillan was in on nine special teams’ plays (38%).
– #41 ANTHONY LEVINE SR., DB, Baltimore (10th season, TENNESSEE STATE) – In Ravens’ 16-10 win over Cleveland, Levine had no stats while playing on 20 special teams’ snaps (83%).