There were some interesting developments in this week’s HBCU NFL Report.
it was apparent that NFL coaches and brass wanted to get a good look at offensive linemen. They particularly had their eyes on those from the HBCU ranks. Most are trying to make their teams as back-ups or emergency starters.
Arizona’s Joshua Miles (Delaware State) and Cleveland’s Alex Taylor (SC State) played 100 per cent of their teams’ offensive snaps. Miami’s Kion Smith (Fayetteville State), Tampa Bay’s Nick Leverett (NC Central) and Pittsburgh’s Trent Scott (Grambling State) all played over 50% of their teams’ snaps.
Chicago’s Lachavious Simmons (Tennessee State), Cleveland’s David Moore (Grambling State) and even Chicago rookie Ja’Tyre Carter (Southern) also got looks. Veterans Terron Armstead (Arkansas-Pine Bluff) of Miami and Tytus Howard (Alabama State) of Houston are sure bets.
Thirty-two players from HBCUs were in camps this week headed to cuts on Tuesday, August 23.
HBCU NFL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
For preseason games of August 18 – 22, 2022
HBCU NFL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
– #45 JOE THOMAS, LB, Chicago (8th season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – Started at linebacker in 27-11 win over Seattle. He tied for the team high with seven total tackles, four solos and three assists, with one tackle for loss. Thomas played 41 snaps on defense (51%) and 14 on special teams (41%). The former two-time MEAC Defensive Player of the Year is looking to make his fifth team. He previously played for Green Bay, Dallas, Houston and Baltimore.
HBCU NFL OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
– #70 ALEX TAYLOR, OT, Cleveland (2nd season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – Started at left tackle in Browns’ 21-10 loss to Philadelphia. Taylor played 74 snaps on offense (100%) and five plays on special teams (25%). Browns rushed for 174 yards and passed for 229 yards.’
HBCU NFL SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
– #16 CHESTER ROGERS, WR/KR, Houston (6th season, GRAMBLING STATE) – In 24-20 win over the LA Rams, Rogers returned three punts for 30 yards (10.,0 yards per return). He had a long return of 30 yards. Rogers lost one fumble. He also returned one kickoff for 20 yards. Rogers played seven offensive snaps (11%) and seven special teams’ snaps (23%).
OTHER TOP PERFORMANCES
– #66 JOSHUA MILES, OT, Arizona (4th season, MORGAN STATE) – Started at right tackle in 24-17 loss to Baltimore. Miles played 68 offensive snaps (100%) and four special teams’ plays (18%). The Cardinals rushed for 55 yards and one TD and passed for 266 yards and one TD.
– #76 KION SMITH, OT, Miami (1st season, FAYETTEVILLE STATE) – Played 42 offensive snaps (72%) and three special teams’ snaps (13%) in 15-13 loss to Las Vegas. The Dolphins rushed for 37 yards and passed for 306 yards in the loss.
– #60 NICK LEVERETT, OL, Tampa Bay (2nd season, NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL) – In 13-3 loss to Tennessee, Leverett was in for 37 offensive plays (66%) .
– #78 TRENT SCOTT, OT, Pittsburgh (5th season, GRAMBLING STATE) – In 16-15 win over Jacksonville, Scott got in on 29 offensive plays (51%). The Steelers ran for 24 yards and passed for 263 yards.
– #60 DAVID MOORE, OG, Cleveland (1st season, GRAMBLING STATE) – Played at guard in the Browns’ 21-10 win over Philadelphia getting in on 33 plays on offense (45%) and one play on special teams (5%).
– #73 LACHAVIOUS SIMMONS, OL, Chicago (3rd season, TENNESSEE STATE) – Got in on 27 offensive snaps (38%) and three on special teams (9%) in 27-11 win over Seattle. The Bears rushed for 117 yards and one TD and passed for 172 yards and one TD in the win.
– #71 TYTUS HOWARD, OG, Houston (4th season, ALABAMA STATE) – Former first round pick started at right tackle in 24-20 win over the LA Rams getting in on 24 plays on offense (38%). The Texans rushed for 118 yards and passed for 184 yards and three TDs.
– #69 JA’TYRE CARTER, OL, Chicago (1st season, SOUTHERN) – Was in on 16 offensive snaps (23%) and four special teams’ snaps (12%) in 27-11 win over Seattle. The Bears rushed for 117 yards and one TD and passed for 172 yards and one TD in the win.
– #12 KHADAREL HODGE, WR, Atlanta (5th season, PRAIRIE VIEW A&M) – Started at wide receiver in 24-16 loss to the New York Jets hauling in one reception in one target for 13 yards. Hodge was in on 12 offensive plays (18%) and on one special teams’ play (4%).
– #85 SHEMAR BRIDGES, WR, Baltimore (1st season, FORT VALLEY STATE) – The rookie caught one pass in three targets for eight yards in 24-17 win over Arizona. Bridges was in on 31 offensive plays (54%) and four special teams’ plays (18%).
– #17 DAYLEN BALDWIN, WR, Cleveland (1st season, JACKSON STATE/MORGAN STATE) – Did not have a reception in two targets in the Browns’ 21-20 win over Philadelphia. Baldwin was in on 30 offensive plays (41%).
– # 72 TERRON ARMSTEAD, LT, New Orleans (9th season, ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF) – Did not play in 15-13 loss to Las Vegas.
– #23 TRENTON CANNON, RB, Tennessee, (5th season, VIRGINIA STATE) – Did not play in 13-3 win over Tampa Bay.
– #19 RYAN McDANIEL, WR, Jacksonville (1st season, NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL) – Did not play vs. Cleveland.
– #41 MARKQUESE BELL, S, Dallas (1st season, FLORIDA A&M) – The free agent rookie started at safety for the Cowboys in 32-18 win over the LA Chargers . He finished with five tackles, second on the team, all solos. He played 53 defensive snaps (72%) and nine special teams’ snaps (32%).
– #14 COBIE DURANT, CB, LA Rams (1st season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – Started at cornerback for Rams in 24-20 loss to Houston and had two solo tackles on defense, forced one fumble and had a sack for -2 yards and had one pass defended. Durant was in on 23 defensive plays (36%) and eight on special teams (37%).
– #27 BOBBY PRICE, CB, Detroit (3rd season, NORFOLK STATE) – Three tackles, two solos and an assist in 27-26 win over Indianapolis. Price played 18 defensive plays (35%) and 10 special teams’ plays (37%).
– #37 MAC McCAIN, CB, Philadelpha (2nd season, NORTH CAROLINA A&T) – Posted three total tackles, three solos in 21-10 loss to Cleveland. He played 29 defensive plays (39%) and 11 special teams’ plays (55%).
– #23 JOSHUA WILLIAMS, CB, Kansas City (1st season, FAYETTEVILLE STATE) – In 24-14 win over Washington, Williams posted three total tackles, two solos and an assist, one pass defended and one special teams tackle. He played 32 plays on defense (49%) and eight on special teams (32%).
– #33 ANTONIO HAMILTON, CB, Arizona (7th season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – Started at cornerback for the Cardinals in 24-17 loss to Baltimore. Hamilton had two solo tackles. He played 11 defensive snaps (19%) and one special teams’ snap (5%).
– #59 JAMES HOUSTON, LB, Detroit (1st year, JACKSON STATE) – Had one solo tackle in 27-26 win over Indianapolis. Houston got in on 23 defensive plays (44%) and 11 special teams’ plays (41%).
– #56 QUINTON BELL, OLB, Atlanta (2nd year, PRAIRIE VIEW A&M) – Had no stats in 24-16 loss to the New York Jets. Bell was in on 16 plays on defense (28%) and 13 plays on special teams (48%).
– #36 DANNY JOHNSON, CB, Washington (5th season, SOUTHERN) – No stats in 24-14 loss to Kansas City. Johnson was in on 18 defensive plays (27%) and four on special teams (16%).
– # 97 JAVON HARGRAVE, DT, Philadelphia (7th season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – Did not play in 21-20 loss to Cleveland.
– #53 SHAQUILLE LEONARD, LB, Indianapolis (5th season, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE) – Did not play vs. Detroit.
– #90 GROVER STEWART, DT, Indianapolis (6th season, ALBANY STATE) – Did not play vs. Detroit.
– #92 DARRYL JOHNSON, DE, Carolina (4th season, NORTH CAROLINA A&T) – Did not play vs. New England.
– #47 DE’SHAUN DIXON, DE, Jacksonville (1st season, NORFOLK STATE) – Did not play in 16-15 loss to Pittsburgh.
– #17 JAMIE GILLAN, P, New York Giants, (4th season, ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF) – Punted three times for 108 yards (36.0-yard average). He had a long punt of 37 yards in 25-22 win over Cincinnati. Gillan was in on 11 special team’s plays (42%).
– # 75 BRANDON PARKER, OT, Las Vegas (4th season, NORTH CAROLINA A&T) – Did not play vs.
– #16 CHESTER ROGERS, WR, Houston (6th season, GRAMBLING STATE) – Did not play vs. New Orleans
HBCU NFL REPORT: PLAYERS BY POSITION IN NFL CAMPS
OFFENSIVE LINEMEN 11 (2G, 9T)
DEFENSIVE BACKS 7 (6DB, 1S)
WIDE RECEIVERS 4 (4WR, OTE)
DEFENSIVE LINEMEN 4 (2DT, 2DE)
LINEBACKERS 4 (2OLB, 2ILB)
RUNNING BACKS 1
As you see above, there are more offensive lineman from the HBCU ranks in NFL camps (11) than any other position.
Last week’s standout, Baltimore wideout Shemar Bridges (Fort Valley State) was only targeted three times this week and had one catch.
Chicago linebacker Joe Thomas (SC State) is showing his worth as he had seven tackles while playing just over half the snaps for the Bears.
Two wide receivers were cut last week. Jequez Ezzard formerly of Howard was waived by Washington and Ryan McDaniel of NC Central was waived by Jacksonville.