As of last week, 20 active Northwestern players were vying for roster spots across the NFl. With the impressive amount of guys that were called in to at least one camp, it seemed probable that Wildcat football would have their highest-ever number of alumni on 53-man professional rosters.
With final cuts having come and gone, that has held true. For the first time ever (by our count), Northwestern will see double-digit players on active rosters coming out of the preseason. Find out who made their respective teams, and who fell just short:
Sherrick McManis, CB, Chicago Bears: MADE THE TEAM - Unsurprisingly, the by far most veteran member of the current Pro ‘Cats brigade reached the active roster again for the Bears, as a key special-teamer and backup defensive back. His season starts on Thursday against the rival (and Northwestern player-laden) Green Bay Packers.
Tommy Doles, G, Chicago Bears: CUT - A late add to Bears camp, Doles’ departure was not a surprise. The rookie undrafted free agent did manage to reach the final round of cuts, reportedly, though there has unfortunately been no buzz about him catching on with a practice squad.
Nate Hall, LB, formerly Dallas Cowboys, now Buffalo Bills: PRACTICE SQUAD - Hall drew rave reviews for his work throughout camp, and especially in Dallas’ preseason games, from outsiders, specifically PFF. His hard work paid off, as despite being cut by the Cowboys, the ballhawking linebacker quickly caught on with Buffalo’s practice squad.
Kyle Queiro, LB, Dallas Cowboys: CUT - Despite being cut relatively early on in the process by Dallas, Queiro seemed set to join the Cowboys’ practice squad for the second straight year. Then things changed:
Two sides didn’t close here. Cowboys went in different direction, source said. LB Kyle Queiro to search for next opportunity elsewhere.— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) September 1, 2019
Former Ohio State running back Mike Weber took the slot instead. There are no updates as of yet with regards to Queiro’s next move.
Joe Jones, LB, Denver Broncos: MADE THE TEAM - Despite battling a triceps injury for much of the preseason, Jones reached Denver’s final roster for the third consecutive year as a backup linebacker and a special-teamer. The native of Plano, Illinois even managed to avoid a season-opening stint on the IR, which is a good sign. The Broncos will begin their 2019 in the late Monday night slot against the Raiders.
Dean Lowry, DE, Green Bay Packers: MADE THE TEAM - After Lowry’s offseason extension, he was a mortal lock to make the roster. The end will be staring Mitch Trubisky down from across the line of scrimmage in jut a couple of days.
Tyler Lancaster, NT, Green Bay Packers: MADE THE TEAM - Like with Lowry, no surprise here. Lancaster will rotate in on the interior defensively for a second consecutive season with the Packers, playing a critical role after his impressive ascent from being a UDFA in 2018.
Dan Vitale, FB, Green Bay Packers: MADE THE TEAM - The Packers will always going to keep one fullback, and Vitale, the overwhelming favorite, won out. Like he did at the very end of last season, the mustachioed Wheaton native will play a role in the offense in Green Bay alongside Aaron Rodgers.
Ibraheim Campbell, S, Green Bay Packers: PUP (Physically unable to perform) LIST - Campbell is still recovering from an ACL tear that will keep him out until well into the season. If/when he does come back, he could play a considerable role in Green Bay.
Anthony Walker Jr., MLB, Indianapolis Colts: MADE THE TEAM - The third-year pro will once again anchor an up-and-coming Colts defense as the starting middle linebacker. Losing Luck hurts, but Indianapolis remains as scary as ever n the other side of the ball, and Walker is at the forefront. Their season kicks off against former teammate Justin Jackson and the Chargers in one of the late-game slots on Sunday.
Justin Jackson, RB, Los Angeles Chargers: MADE THE TEAM - Another lock for his roster (impressive as a member of a contender coming off of being a seventh-round pick), the only question that remains for Jackson is that of playing time. Melvin Gordon still hasn’t signed, but if he does, JJTBC’s week-to-week role in the offense will likely be minimal. If he doesn’t the possibilities are endless.
Montre Hartage, S, Miami Dolphins: CUT (for now) - After an impressive camp in which he seemed to have worked his way into a role at backup safety thanks to a position change, Hartage, who survived the original cuts, was dropped amidst Miami’s reshuffling. The Dolphins have yet to fill out their practice squad, though, and it’s likely that he will earn a role there if he isn’t picked up somewhere first.
Ifeadi Odenigbo, DE, Minnesota Vikings: MADE THE TEAM - Odenigbo’s resurgence has been fun to watch. The athletic edge rusher accrued the fifth-most hurries in the NFL through the first three weeks of the preseason, doing more than enough to earn himself the job in Minnesota that had eluded him for two straight seasons. The Vikings will host the Falcons on Sunday at noon in their Week 1 matchup.
Austin Carr, WR, New Orleans Saints: MADE THE TEAM - Carr was one of the six receivers the Saints held on to, making the team in New Orleans for the third consecutive year. The former walk-on turned star was reportedly on the bubble for 2019’s camp, but made it through. He and the Saints will battle the Texans in the first Monday night game of the week.
Garrett Dickerson, TE, New York Giants: MADE THE TEAM - Dickerson was in a tight battle with rookie C.J. Conrad for the final spot at tight end, but after an injury to the man in front of him, it appears that Dickerson will move all the way up to become the #3 TE. A big opportunity in his second year in New York begins in the Cowboys in Sunday’s nationally-televised late game.
Trevor Siemian, QB, New York Jets: MADE THE TEAM - After winning a semi-battle against Clayton Thorson by going 5-5 in his limited on-field time when the two met head-to-head in Preseason’s Week 4, Siemian coasted to the backup job in the Meadowlands. The ex-Broncos starter has caved out a niche as a clipboard-holder, and hey, there are certainly worse things! Simian will continue to live comfortably.
Godwin Igwebuike, S, New York Jets: CUT - The safety was cut quickly by the Jets, the fourth team to employ him across his well-less-than-two-year career. Igwebuike is running out of options, but still has a few candidates for places he could still catch on.
Clayton Thorson, QB, formerly Philadelphia Eagles, now Dallas Cowboys: PRACTICE SQUAD - With an uneven preseason performance behind him, Thorson is ready for a fresh start. The Eagles became the only team to cut a quarterback they selected in 2019 thanks to his struggles after going in the fifth round, but there is plenty of time for him to turn things around in a new locale.
Jordan Thompson, DL, San Francisco 49ers: CUT - Thompson seemingly had some nice moments, but never was a prime contender to make the 53 in San Fran. He’ll have to regroup and decide what he wants to do next.
Blake Hance, OT, formerly Washington, now (probably) Jacksonville Jaguars: PRACTICE SQUAD - Some folks in the nation’s capital had plenty of positive things to say about Hance’s preseason performance. Washington may have cut him, but the tackle caught attention from other places too, including from Jacksonville, where Ben Standig revealed that Hance will join the practice squad.