From Connecticut To the NFL: Uconn alumni in week 2

The second week of the NFL season included a few upsets, unpredictable fantasy stars, and performances from 14 of the 18 UConn football team alumni players. The 18 players are scattered throughout the divisions, with the majority of alum in the AFC Division. Four of the 18 players are either injured or floating around as free agents. Dan Orlovsky remains the backup for Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. Former UConn wide receiver, Nick Williams was recently released by the Washington Redskins and remains a free agent. Jacksonville cornerback Dwayne Gratz injured his ankle in practice last week. Indianapolis Colts Donald Thomas’s 2014 season ended before it began, when the guard was placed on injured reserve after tearing his quad. Despite various injuries and waivers, 14 UConn players took the field for the second week of the NFL season.

Oakland Raider’s safety, Tyvon Branch had an impressive performance in Sunday’s 30-14 loss against the Texans. The 2008 UConn alum led the team with 11 total tackles, nine of which were solo. This is Branch’s sixth season in the NFL, since being selected by Oakland in the fourth round of the 2008 draft. Branch was joined by a fellow Husky in 2013, when the Raiders drafted linebacker, Sio Moore. Moore suffered an ankle injury during Sunday’s game, and remains questionable until his MRI results come back.

While Moore suffers from an injury, another former Husky will benefit from a teammate’s injury. Donald Brown, running back for the San Diego Chargers, will take on a starting position, following the Charger’s Ryan Matthews knee injury in Week Two.

The Chargers also picked up UConn alum, defensive end, Kendall Reyes in the 2012 Draft. Reyes had a tough game in Week Two against the Seattle Seahawks, though he improved on staying in his lane, and blocking possible outlets for quarterback runs.

Indianapolis Colts cornerback Darius Butler spoke with, 1070 The Fan radio show following Monday’s tough loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Butler aided the secondary in making up for a lacking pass rush.

“It’s tough man, because he’s small and he’s powerful at the same time, compact, and very quick,” said Butler on tracking down Eagles running back, Darren Sproles.

          Other former Huskies in the NFL include Will Beatty (New York Giants), Marcus Easley (Buffalo Bills), Ryan Griffin (Houston Texans), Danny Lansanah (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), Robert McClain (Atlanta Falcons), Anthony Sherman (Kansas City Chiefs) Shamar Stephen (Minnesota Vikings), Jordan Todman (Jacksonville Jaguars), and Blidi Wreh-Wilson (Tennessee Titans).


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