Everyone is anxiously awaiting the College Football season as the summer heat continues to rage on. Obviously, if you are reading this, you are anticipating the Rebels opening game but perhaps you are like me and care about where the former Rebs are in the NFL this year as well.
I personally do not hold to one team at the professional level. I was a New York Giants “fan” as long as Eli Manning was, but I prefer to just enjoy former Rebs rather than attach my allegiance to a franchise.
So with new faces entering the league and old faces on the move, let’s catch up with our former stars.
A team to watch this season due to the Lamar Jackson contract saga plus the addition of Odell Beckham Jr. (go to hell LSU). Jackson wants to prove he can spin it with the best of them and beside OBJ, he has one of the best Ole Miss receivers ever, still trying to find his way in the NFL.
Laquon Treadwell joins the fold after six catches in six games next to DK Metcalf in Seattle last season. Perhaps Treadwell has one last shot to breakout. Laquon will be joined by rookie Tavious Robinson.
Nick Broeker heads north to join Dawson Knox. Who knows what happens with Knox as the Bills used an early round pick on another tight end in Dalton Kincaid. Hopefully he continues to be one of Allen’s favorite redzone targets.
Matt Corral’s injury last year is just brutal. With the revolving door at quarterback, he was never given the shot to win the job and now they have drafted Bryce Young to be the starter. Everyone needs a good back up, but I still want to see Corral get a fair crack at winning a job somewhere.
Jonathan Mingo has a change to step in and be an important piece for this offense after the Panthers traded away DJ Moore to the Bears. Don’t forget stud pass rusher Marquis Haynes is in Charlotte as well.
When Aaron Rodgers ended up with the New York Jets, I was thrilled with my Elijah Moore stock. This was his time to absolutely explode in the league. Then the Jets shipped him to Cleveland. Granted, the Browns could possibly have a decent QB now, but it is yet to be determined what level impact the slot receiver will have this year.
Rebels from the class of 2022 Sam Williams and Dontario Drummond remain on the Cowboys roster. While Sam is in the rotation on the defensive line, Drummond still is working his way up the depth chart.
Let’s be honest here. No one is tuning into the Texans or to watch offensive lineman play. However, Laremy Tunsil and Greg Little are both in Houston for what its worth, and Tunsil is widely regarded as the best at his position league-wide.
One of the up and coming fun teams in the NFL is the home of two former Rebel favorites. Snoop Conner is still buried on the depth chart there, but Evan Engram is one of the leading pass targets for Trevor Lawrence. Maybe Snoop can force his way into the action in year two.
Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers have two former Ole Miss defensive backs in AJ Finley and Deane Leonard. Both have a shot to crack the rotation with a solid training camp/preseason.
Los Angeles Rams
Perhaps one of my favorite fits for a former Reb in all of football is Zach Evans with the Rams. Due to injury, the Rams have had to reach deep into their RB depth and Evans could prove to be the most talented all-around back on the roster. He will see some NFL minutes this year, hopefully he can force his way into a significant role.
The Titans gave up AJ Brown and instead have former Rebel AJ Moore. Joining Moore are linebacker Chance Campbell and defensive back Otis Reese IV. All three will struggle to see the field and may be a few years away from true impact.
Chicago Bears- DeMarquis Gates and Jaylon Jones
Cincinnati Bengals- Ben Brown and Mike Hilton (still a beast)
Denver Broncos- DJ Jones (starter)
Detroit Lions - Benito Jones (starter)
Green Bay Packers - Malik Heath and Royce Newman
Kansas City Chiefs- Jerrion Ealy
Las Vegas Raiders - Brandon Bolden (yea he’s still playing)
Miami Dolphins- Braylon Sanders
New York Giants - Troy Brown
New York Jets - Kenny Yeboah
Philadelphia Eagles - AJ Brown (still the mayor of Starkville)
Pittsburgh Steelers - Mark Robinson (epitome of a Steeler LB)
Seattle Seahawks - D.K. Metcalf (still a specimen)
San Francisco 49ers- Myles Hartfield
Washington Commanders - Mason Brooks