Tennessee Volunteers in the NFL; Where are They Now

Tight end Jason Witten #1 of the University of Tennessee Volunteers carries the ball against the University of Maryland Terrapins during the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl at the Georgia Dome on December 31, 2002 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

As the start of the NFL preseason begins, the Tennessee Volunteers will have 33 former players on current NFL rosters. Tennessee is well-known for producing former Vol players in the NFL and 2019 will be no exception. The Pittsburgh Steelers lead the way with four on their roster. There are three veteran Volunteers, Eric Berry, Justin Hunter, and Matt Darr, that will likely find teams before the beginning of the regular season but are currently free agents. In addition, there are several younger Vols that have received serious playing time in the first week of the preseason.

Tennessee Volunteers in the NFL; Where are They Now

Joshua Dobbs (11). (Photo by Greg McWilliams/Icon Sportswire) (Photo by Greg McWilliams/Icon Sportswire/Corbis via Getty Images)

1. Josh Dobbs, Pittsburgh Steelers: 85 passing yards, 44 rushing yards, 98.4 QB rating

Dobbs, who is battling for the back-up QB position, had an impressive two series for the Pittsburgh Steelers against Tampa Bay. He had two highlight plays, a 43-yard throw to James Washington and a 36-yard scramble that led to a Steelers’ field goal. His competitor, Mason Rudolph, also had a strong showing last Friday night, however, Dobbs did all that he could to keep it a tight race through Week 1.

 

 

2. Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints: 11 rushing yards, 15 receiving yards

Kamara enters the 2019 season as the clear starter in the Saints’ backfield after Mark Ingram joined the Baltimore Ravens in the off-season. Kamara played very limited snaps in the preseason opener but should gradually see more as he prepares for the season opener.

Rashaan Gaulden #7. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

3. Rashaan Gaulden, Carolina Panthers: Four tackles, one pass defended, one QB hit

Gaulden is projected to be the starting strong safety heading into his third season with the Carolina Panthers. He had an impressive showing this week as his defense held the Chicago Bears to three points while he was on the field.

 

 

 

 

4. Tyler Bray, Chicago Bears: 47% Completion, 85 yards, 62.1 QB rating

Bray’s struggles continue at the start of the preseason. Bray was out-performed by Chase Daniel as the two battle to be the back-up quarterback. The Bears will face the Giants in week two, and Bray must show dramatic improvement to get back in the quarterback race. If the Bears decide to keep two quarterbacks on the roster, Bray has an uphill battle to clinch the spot.

Related Article: Top 10 Vols this Decade
Josh Malone #3. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

5. Josh Malone, Cincinnati Bengals: Two catches, 23 yards

If he can avoid injuries, Josh Malone will likely be the Bengal’s fourth receiver on their depth chart. Malone showed solid route-running skills and displayed the advantage of his 6’3” frame but must prove that he can be a viable target for quarterback Andy Dalton. Malone will have to battle a young, deep Cincinnati receiver group that includes AJ Green, Tyler Boyd, John Ross, and Alex Erickson.

 

 

6. A.J. Johnson, Denver Broncos: Four tackles

Johnson begins the season fighting for a spot on Denver’s 53-man roster. He had a strong showing this week against the Seahawks as he recorded four tackles and saw extensive playing time but has to compete with a few experienced teammates at the position. If his success continues, Johnson could very well earn one of the final roster spots heading into the regular season.

Emmanuel Moseley #12. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

7. Emmanuel Moseley, San Francisco 49ers: Three tackles

Moseley played the majority of the game on Saturday night against the Dallas Cowboys and was solid throughout the night. He enters his second NFL season looking to secure a spot in the 49ers defensive backfield. Moseley, an undrafted signee in 2018, received high praise throughout the television broadcast as he flew across the field and made numerous plays in the secondary.

 

 

 

In addition to the former Volunteers listed above, the following players also saw plays in Week 1 of the NFL preseason:

RB John Kelly, Los Angeles Rams: 12 total yards
FB Jakob Johnson, New England Patriots: One catch, five yards
TE Alex Ellis, Philadelphia Eagles: One special teams tackle
DE Kyle Phillips, New York Jets: Two tackles
DT Daniel McCullers, Pittsburgh Steelers: One tackle
DT Shy Tuttle, New Orleans Saints: One tackle
LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Detriot Lions: Two tackles
LB LaTroy Lewis, Tennessee Titans: Two tackles
DB Cam Sutton, Pittsburgh Steelers: Two tackles
DB Justin Coleman, Detroit Lions: One tackle

P Michael Palardy, Carolina Panthers: Four punts, 164 yards, punt inside 20, 51-yard avg.
P Dustin Colquitt, Kansas City Chiefs: Two punts, 79 yards, punt inside 20, 40-yard avg.
P Trevor Daniel, Houston Texans: One punt, 38 yards
P Britton Colquitt, Cleveland Browns: Two punts, 48-yard avg, punt inside 20

The following Volunteers were on active rosters in Week 1 but did not record any statistics:

WR Cordarrelle Patterson, Chicago Bears
TE Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys
TE Ethan Wolf, Jacksonville Jaguars (signed 8/11/19)
TE Luke Stocker, Atlanta Falcons
TE Jason Croom, Buffalo Bills
OL Ramon Foster, Pittsburgh Steelers
OL Kahlil McKenzie, Kansas City Chiefs
OL Ja’Wuan James, Denver Broncos
OL Zach Fulton, Houston Texans
DE Malik Jackson, Philadelphia Eagles
DE Derek Barnett, Philadelphia Eagles
LB Quart’e Sapp, Tennessee Titans

LS Morgan Cox, Baltimore Ravens

Main Photo Credit:

Jason Witten #1 of the University of Tennessee Volunteers. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

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