34 Nittany Lions alumni on NFL rosters
Thirty-four former Penn State players were on the rosters of 21 National Football League (NFL) teams as the NFL season opens. The Nittany Lions are perennially a top-20 program in producing players in the NFL. A total of 24 Penn State players made 53-man rosters, while the Nittany Lions have five former players on practice squads and four Penn Staters currently on injured reserve with NFL teams. In addition, there are two Nittany Lions on NFL rosters who did not play football at Penn State in Chris Hogan (New England) and Ross Travis (Indianapolis).
Additionally, Linebacker U alum Sean Lee was selected as team captains for the Cowboys for the sixth-straight season.
The Miami Dolphins, New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers boast a league-high three Penn Staters each, including 10th-year defensive end Cameron Wake on the Dolphins and 2018 No. 2 overall draft pick Saquon Barkley on the Giants.
Five teams -= Arizona, Chicago, Oakland, San Francisco and Tennessee — each have two PSU alums. Fourth-year safety Adrian Amos enters the Bears season following a breakout 2017 campaign and is joined by former Jaguars receiver Allen Robinson II, who is coming off an ACL injury suffered in last season’s opening week.
Fourteen-year vet and San Francisco All-Pro placekicker Robbie Gould is Penn State’s elder statesman. In the NFC East, Pro Bowl linebacker Sean Lee returns for his ninth season with the Cowboys, while sixth-year offensive lineman Stefen Wisniewski is looking to help the Eagles defend their Super Bowl title.
A total of 10 players from Penn State’s 2017 Fiesta Bowl-winning squad are on NFL rosters. In addition to Barkley, Marcus Allen (Pittsburgh Steelers), Mike Gesicki (Miami Dolphins), Brendan Mahon (Carolina Panthers), DaeSean Hamilton (Denver Broncos), and Troy Apke (Washington Redskins) are on active rosters, while Curtis Cothran (Minnesota Vikings), Grant Haley (New York Giants), Saeed Blacknall and Jason Cabinda (Oakland Raiders) will start the season on practice squads.
Former Penn State men’s lacrosse player Chris Hogan also appeared in the most recent Super Bowl and is returning to the Patriots for his sixth season in the NFL. Additionally, former men’s basketball player Ross Travis is with the Indianapolis Colts for his third NFL season, but is on injured reserve.
Eight former Nittany Lions are patrolling the sidelines as part of NFL coaching staffs in 2019: Tom Bradley (Pittsburgh, defensive backs), Gary Brown (Dallas, running backs), Bobby Engram (Baltimore, wide receivers), Peter Giunta (New Orleans, senior defensive assistant), Al Golden (Detroit, linebackers), D’Anton Lynn (Houston, assistant defensive backs), Mike Munchak (Pittsburgh, offensive line), Paul Pasqualoni (Detroit, defensive coordinator).
The No. 13/10-ranked Nittany Lions travel to Pittsburgh Saturday for a primetime meeting at 8 p.m. on ABC.
A limited number of single game tickets for the 2018 season presented by PSECU are available for Appalachian State, Kent State and Maryland. Verified resale tickets are available for all 7 home games via ticketmaster.com. With more than 6,300 new season tickets sold, the season ticket allotment for the 2018 season is exhausted. For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.NittanyLionClub.com, call 1-800-NITTANY weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. or visit the Bryce Jordan Center ticket office weekdays from 10 a.m-6 p.m.
NFL Kickoff Week Roster
(35 overall; 33 football alumni)
Arizona Cardinals (2): A.Q. Shipley IR (9), Gerald Hodges (7)
Atlanta Falcons (1): Jack Crawford (7)
Carolina Panthers (1): Brendan Mahon (1)
Chicago Bears (2): Adrian Amos (4), Allen Robinson II (5)
Cleveland Browns (1): Anthony Zettel (3)
Cincinnati Bengals (1): Christian HackenbergP (3)
Dallas Cowboys (1): Sean Lee C (9)
Denver Broncos (1): DaeSean Hamilton (1)
Indianapolis Colts: Ross Travis IR (3; former MBB player)
Kansas City Chiefs (1): Jordan Lucas (3)
Los Angeles Chargers (1): Trevor Williams (3)
Los Angeles Rams (1): Garrett Sickels IR (2)
Miami Dolphins (3): Mike Gesicki (1), Mike Hull IR (4), Cameron Wake (10)
Minnesota Vikings (1): Curtis CothranP (1)
New England Patriots: Chris Hogan (6; former MLAX player)
New York Giants (3): Saquon Barkley (1), Grant Haley P (1), Nate Stupar (7)
Oakland Raiders (2): Saeed Blacknall P (1), Jason Cabinda P (1)
Philadelphia Eagles (1): Stefen Wisniewski (8)
Pittsburgh Steelers (3): Marcus Allen (1), Malik Golden IR (2), Jesse James (4)
San Francisco 49ers (2): Garry Gilliam (5), Robbie Gould (14)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3): Chris Godwin (2), Donovan Smith (4), Carl Nassib (3)
Tennessee Titans (2): Austin Johnson (3), DaQuan Jones (5)
Washington Redskins (1): Troy Apke (1)
P indicates practice squad IR indicates injured reserve C indicates captain