Former Florida Gators in the NFL: Week 12 recap

With the 2010-11 NFL season still in full swing, a number of Florida Gators participated in Week 12 action, some of whom had an impact on their team’s performance.OGGOA has checked and re-checked the box scores to bring you a summary of what these Gators accomplished during the 12th week of the season.

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
WR DAVID NELSON, Buffalo Bills: Six receptions for 58 yards (targets: 7, long: 17)
DE CARLOS DUNLAP, Cincinnati Bengals: Three solo tackles, two sacks
CB JOE HADEN, Cleveland Browns: Three tackles (two solo), pass defended, interception (12-yard return)

LB MIKE PETERSON, Atlanta Falcons: Fumble recovery
S MAJOR WRIGHT, Chicago Bears: Six tackles (four solo)
WR ANDRE CALDWELL, Cincinnati Bengals: Fumble on punt return
S REGGIE NELSON, Cincinnati Bengals: Four tackles (three solo)
WR JABAR GAFFNEY, Denver Broncos: Three rec. for 59 yards (targets: 6, long: 28)
KR BRANDON JAMES, Indianapolis Colts: Two receptions for four yards (targets: 3), nine kickoff returns for 150 yards (long: 24)
DT JEREMY MINCEY, Jacksonville Jaguars: Solo tackle
WR PERCY HARVIN, Minnesota Vikings: Five receptions for 32 yards, three rushes for 14 yards, four kickoff returns for 78 yards (long: 26)
LB JERMAINE CUNNINGHAM, New England Patriots: Three tackles (two solo)
TE AARON HERNANDEZ, New England Patriots: Reception for 18 yards
LB BRANDON SPIKES, New England Patriots: Three solo tackles, pass defended
DT GERARD WARREN, New England Patriots: Two tackles (one solo)
DE ALEX BROWN, New Orleans Saints: Two solo tackles (one for loss)
WR LOUIS MURPHY, Oakland Raiders: Four rec. for 73 yards (targets: 6, long: 29)
WR RILEY COOPER, Philadelphia Eagles: Reception for 29 yards (targets: 2)
C MAURKICE POUNCEY, Pittsburgh Steelers: Tackle
LB BRANDON SILER, San Diego Chargers:Two tackles (one solo)

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN — NO STATISTICS / DID NOT PLAY
G Cooper Carlisle (Oakland Raiders) – QB Tim Tebow & DT Marcus Thomas (Broncos), DE Derrick Harvey (Jaguars), Channing Crowder (Miami Dolphins), CB Lito Sheppard (Vikings), RB Fred Taylor (Patriots), DE Ray McDonald (San Francisco 49ers), FB Earnest Graham (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), QB Rex Grossman (Washington Redskins)

INACTIVES
LB Andra Davis (Bills), DE Jarvis Moss (Raiders), LT Max Starks (Steelers)

NOTES
- This is Haden’s third-straight OGGOA Player of the Week honor; he has nabbed an interception in three consecutive games.
- Taylor was activated for the first time since Week 3.
- Wright played his second NFL game and saw success.
- Moss was inactive after joining Oakland late in the week.

OGGOA RELATED: Week 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11

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Former Florida Gators in the NFL: Week 11 recap

With the 2010-11 NFL season now underway, a number of Florida Gators participated in Week 11 action, some of whom had an impact on their team’s performance.OGGOA has checked and re-checked the box scores to bring you a summary of what these Gators accomplished during the 11th week of the season.

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
CB JOE HADEN, Cleveland Browns: Three solo tackles, three passes defended, interception (27-yard return)
DT JEREMY MINCEY, Jax Jaguars: Three solo tackles, two sacks, two Gator Chomps

LB MIKE PETERSON, Atlanta Falcons: Three solo tackles (one for loss), pass def.
WR DAVID NELSON, Buffalo Bills: Target
S MAJOR WRIGHT, Chicago Bears: Two tackles (one solo)
WR ANDRE CALDWELL, Cincinnati Bengals: Reception for nine yards, three kickoff returns for 79 yards (long: 32)
DE CARLOS DUNLAP, Cincinnati Bengals: Solo tackle
S REGGIE NELSON, Cincinnati Bengals: Five tackles (three solo), three passes def.
WR JABAR GAFFNEY, Denver Broncos: Three rec. for 33 yards (targets: 7, long: 18)
QB TIM TEBOW, Denver Broncos: Handoff
DT MARCUS THOMAS, Denver Broncos: Two solo tackles
KR BRANDON JAMES, Indianapolis Colts: Five kickoff returns for 79 yards (long: 26), two punt returns for one yard
DE DERRICK HARVEY, Jacksonville Jaguars: Sack
LB CHANNING CROWDER, Miami Dolphins: Six tackles (five solo)
WR PERCY HARVIN, Minnesota Vikings: Two receptions for 12 yards (targets: 5, long: 9), two rushes for 18 yards (long: 16), four kickoff returns for 69 yards (long: 25)
LB JERMAINE CUNNINGHAM, New England Patriots: Three tackles (two solo)
TE AARON HERNANDEZ, New England Patriots: Reception for eight yards, touchdown
LB BRANDON SPIKES, New England Patriots: Two solo tackles
DT GERARD WARREN, New England Patriots: Three tackles (one solo)
DE ALEX BROWN, New Orleans Saints: Four tackles (three solo, TFL), Gator Chomp
WR LOUIS MURPHY, Oakland Raiders: Three receptions for 25 yards (targets: 6, long: 12), fumble
LB BRANDON SILER, San Diego Chargers: Three tackles (two solo), Gator Chomp
DE RAY MCDONALD, San Francisco 49ers: Tackle
FB EARNEST GRAHAM, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Three carries for 7 yards (long: 3)

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN — NO STATISTICS / DID NOT PLAY
C Maurkice Pouncey (Pittsburgh Steelers), G Cooper Carlisle (Oakland Raiders) – CB Lito Sheppard (Vikings), WR Riley Cooper (Philadelphia Eagles), QB Rex Grossman (Washington Redskins)

INACTIVES
LB Andra Davis (Bills), RB Fred Taylor (Patriots), LT Max Starks (Steelers)

NOTES
- Wright’s action was the first he has seen this season due to injury.
- DE Jarvis Moss was cut by the Broncos this week and was not picked up off waivers.
- After a great special teams sack by Siler, he performed the Gator Chomp – as did teammate and former Colorado CB Donald Strickland.

OGGOA RELATED: Week 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10

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Former Florida Gators in the NFL: Week 10 recap

With the 2010-11 NFL season now underway, a number of Florida Gators participated in Week 10 action, some of whom had an impact on their team’s performance.OGGOA has checked and re-checked the box scores to bring you a summary of what these Gators accomplished during the 10th week of the season.

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
CB JOE HADEN, Cleveland Browns: Seven solo tackles, two passes def., interception, two kickoff returns for 51 yards (long: 32)
WR PERCY HARVIN, Minnesota Vikings: Team-high four receptions for 64 yards (targets: 6, long: 53), touchdown; six kick returns for 151 yards (long: 33)
QB TIM TEBOW, Denver Broncos: 1-for-1 for three yards, touchdown; two rushes for two yards, touchdown

LB MIKE PETERSON, Atlanta Falcons: Four tackles (two solo)
WR ANDRE CALDWELL, Cincinnati Bengals: One rush for -2 yards
S REGGIE NELSON, Cincinnati Bengals: Four tackles
DE CARLOS DUNLAP, Cincinnati Bengals: Two solo tackles for loss, sack
WR JABAR GAFFNEY, Denver Broncos: Three receptions for 57 yards (targets: 10, long: 40), touchdown
DE JARVIS MOSS, Denver Broncos: Two solo tackles
DT MARCUS THOMAS, Denver Broncos: Two solo tackles, pass defended
KR BRANDON JAMES, Indianapolis Colts: Four receptions for 36 yards (targets: 8, long: 17), two punt returns for five yards
DE DERRICK HARVEY, Jacksonville Jaguars: Solo tackle
DT JEREMY MINCEY, Jacksonville Jaguars: Five solo tackles, QB hit
LB CHANNING CROWDER, Miami Dolphins: Two tackles
CB LITO SHEPPARD, Minnesota Vikings: Two solo tackles
TE AARON HERNANDEZ, New England Patriots: Two targets, pass defended
LB BRANDON SPIKES, New England Patriots: Two tackles (one solo)
DT GERARD WARREN, New England Patriots: Three tackles (one solo), half sack
WR RILEY COOPER, Philadelphia Eagles: Target
DE RAY MCDONALD, San Francisco 49ers: Two solo tackles (one for loss)

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN — NO STATISTICS / DID NOT PLAY
C Maurkice Pouncey (Pittsburgh Steelers) – WR David Nelson (Buffalo Bills), DE Jermaine Cunningham (Patriots), FB Earnest Graham (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), QB Rex Grossman (Washington Redskins)

BYE WEEK
DE Alex Brown (New Orleans Saints), G Cooper Carlisle, WR Louis Murphy (Oakland Raiders), LB Brandon Siler (San Diego Chargers)

INACTIVES
LB Andra Davis (Bills), S Major Wright (Chicago Bears), RB Fred Taylor (Patriots), LT Max Starks (Steelers)

NOTES
- Tebow recorded his first career NFL passing touchdown…on his first career NFL pass.
- Dunlap recorded his first career NFL sack.

OGGOA RELATED: Week 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9

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FOUR BITS: Ingram, Noah, James, Harvin

1 » ESPN‘s Chris Mortensen reported Thursday that former Florida Gators tight end Cornelius Ingram has returned to the Philadelphia Eagles – the team that drafted him in 2009 and cut him earlier this year – as a member of the practice squad. Ingram was expected to make an impact for the Eagles this season but was limited once again with a knee injury that forced him to miss a lot of training camp. He hopes to earn his way back on the team through the practice squad but could theoretically be signed off of it by another organization at any time.

2 » OGGOA had some choice words about Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett on our Twitter account last week. It seems Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah somewhat agrees with our sentiments as he called out Garnett on the radio on Wednesday. “Kevin Garnett will not – will not – get a Christmas gift from me,” Noah said jokingly. “I don’t like him. He’s a very mean guy. Where’s the love? None at all. Ugly, too. I had his poster in my room. I used to wear his jersey. And the truth is, my rookie year, I was in admiration of the guy and he kind of shut me down. And he was very mean to me my rookie year. And he’s only mean to the young guys and the [European players] for some reason. I don’t know why, but that’s who he doesn’t like. He’s not nice. I talk a lot of trash out there, but c’mon, be a little sensitive. Be sweet.” Though Noah says a lot of things tongue-in-cheek and likes to joke around, he does consider Garnett a “dirty player” who “is who he is.”

3 » According to the Indianapolis Star, former Gators wide receiver/kick returner Brandon James has been promoted from the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad to their active roster effective immediately. James will (at least temporarily) fill WR Austin Collie’s roster spot while he recovers from a concussion sustained last weekend. Though he may not see the field as a receiver unless one of the Colts’ current starters gets injured, James may be able to see the field as soon as Sunday as the team’s kick returner. Keep your eyes peeled on Indianapolis’ game this weekend and look for a 5’7”, 170 lb. speed demon – especially on special teams.

4 » Minnesota Vikings WR Percy Harvin missed practice yesterday after coming down with another migraine headache. Harvin, who dealt with severe bouts in the offseason but was able to get things under control after meeting with doctors and learning that he suffered from sleep apnea, is still expected to play this weekend. He is still recovering from an injured ankle but that did not stop him from posting a career-high 126 receiving yards last week while limping around.

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9/8: Meyer’s teleconference and Gators notes

OGGOA had the opportunity to participate in Florida Gators head coach Urban Meyer’s Southeastern Conference teleconference on Wednesday (we will be doing so every week). Below are some notes from media availabilities with Meyer and other members of the team over the course of the day:

» Even though sophomore left tackle Xavier Nixon may be ready to play Saturday, redshirt senior right guard Maurice Hurt told reporters Wednesday that he believes he will continue starting at right tackle while normal starting RT redshirt senior Marcus Gilbert fills in on the left side. “We’re still getting some guys back and we’re still shuffling the rotation, but for now I think I’m going to be at right tackle,” Hurt said.

» Meyer noted that while it may not have appeared the Gators were trying to throw the ball deep and spread the field in the first three quarters, many of the called pass players were messed up before they could develop due to some of the miscues in the backfield. Additionally, he felt that the team was put in a hole yardage-wise due to some of the bad snaps that was tough to get out from on particular drives.

QUOTES FROM MEYER

Opening statement: “We’re 1-0 but a little disappointed from last week. The guys have come out with some urgency and worked real hard, so we’ll have to play a lot better or we won’t beat South Florida, an excellent team – one of the best quarterbacks we’ll face all year and very athletic on defense, so we better get our game right.”

On if the spread offense allows “little guys” to excel: “We don’t just look for smaller… We look for the best football players and adapt the system to them. So if a guy’s a little undersized – like a Brandon James or Chris Rainey or Jeff Demps – we certainly will not not take them because they don’t fit our system. We’ll make the system fit.”

On the new NCAA rule not allowing schools to offer scholarships to recruits until the summer of their senior year: “I think that’s all in good intent. The problem with rules is, when you make rules, you have to enforce them. But I think the purpose of the rule is very well thought out, and we’re obviously going to follow that rule.”

On redshirt sophomore Sam Robey’s health: “There is a chance he’ll get in [Saturday]. He’s 100 percent healthy now. He’s had injuries all training camp with a knee and then bursitis in his elbow. He practiced a full-go [Tuesday] and is on-call this weekend.”

On Nixon’s health: “We’re very positive from what he did [Tuesday] in practice. Today is a big day for him, but he looked really good [Tuesday] as did [redshirt senior defensive tackle Terron] Sanders and [redshirt senior left guard] Carl Johnson. So we’re expected to have those guys for Saturday.”

On redshirt sophomore Matt Patchan’s health: “He’s still in that pretty long cast. He’s still going to be a few weeks, but we wish we had him because he’s such an intense player.”

On South Florida quarterback B.J. Daniels: “He’s a playmaker… He’s a mobile guy and every time there’s a guy that can move around back there, he can be trouble. […] He’s the man on offense that you have to contain. Once he gets out of that pocket, it can be trouble.”

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NFL cuts deliver good and bad news for ex-Gators

NFL teams were required to trim their active rosters to 53 men on Saturday, which meant a number of former Florida Gators were on the fence about whether or not they would make their respective teams going into the 2010-11 season.

GOOD NEWS

» As expected, all nine Gators selected in the 2010 NFL Draft made it through training camp and the preseason.

» Former Florida wide receiver David Nelson, who signed an undrafted free agent contract with the Buffalo Bills after the draft, was told Saturday afternoon that he made the team. “Officially a Buffalo Bill,” Nelson wrote to his Twitter account. “Thanks to everyone for the support and prayers through this long but rewarding process!”

» Though it is not believed he was in complete danger of making the cut, former Gators safety Reggie Nelson got what he will likely consider his own form of good news Saturday, as the Jacksonville Jaguars decided to trade him to the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals, in need of safety help after losing Gibril Wilson to a season-ending injury, decided to trade cornerback David Jones and a conditional draft pick to the Jaguars. Nelson will be reunited with wide receiver Andre Caldwell and defensive end Carlos Dunlap in Cincinnati.

BAD NEWS

» Tight end Cornelius Ingram has faced plenty of adversity since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament during his senior season with Florida. Drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles with the No. 153 overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft, Ingram proceeded to tear the same ACL again as a rookie during training camp. Finally back at near full speed, he had been playing well for the Eagles this offseason until a baker’s cyst in his knee kept him out of action. Ingram was released by Philadelphia on Saturday but will be a candidate to land on the team’s practice squad should he go unclaimed.

» Even though he scored three touchdowns in the Indianapolis Colts‘ final preseason game, former Gators kick returner Brandon James did not make the cut with one of the top teams in the AFC. Instead, the team elected to sign Devin Moore for that job. James did muff a punt that was returned for the touchdown during the preseason and will likely be picked up as a practice squad player with either the Colts or another team.

» One of the team’s most valuable defensive players throughout the 2009 playoffs, former Gators defensive end Bobby McCray was cut by the New Orleans Saints on Saturday, just over a month after the team brought him back (they originally let him go on June 21). In the offseason, the Saints signed fellow former Florida DE Alex Brown, who will be a starter for New Orleans this season.

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TWO BITS: Tebow, James stand out; Leak ready

1 » A number of former Florida Gators turned NFL rookies were taking part in their final 2010 preseason game Thursday, but two in particular – Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow and Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Brandon James – stood out from the pack. After fumbling a bad snap in his first series (which was returned for a touchdown), Tebow went 12-of-16 for 167 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He had a QB rating of 102.9 and also carried the ball four times for 21 yards. James was the star of his team’s game, catching four balls for 56 yards and three touchdowns and even converting the two-point conversion on his own second score. OGGOA will have a more complete and detailed rookie post later.

2 » As OGGOA reported a few days ago, former Gators QB Chris Leak will be making his first CFL start Friday night filling in for Montreal Alouettes starter Anthony Calvillo. For the first time in his career, Leak practiced as the team’s starter for the week rather than being thrown into the game in a back-up role. “This is a game I’ve played my entire life, since I was 8. I want to go out and have fun,” Leak told The Montreal Gazette. “I’m going to play the game and be myself. Whatever that is, you’ll see it. But I know there’ll be adversity. Someone’s still got to throw, run, catch and kick. That’s the game of football. I’m always anxious to play; I guess you could say nervous. I’m focusing on my responsibilities. I want to be accountable, protect the ball, stay on course and play through adversity.”

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Gators’ rookies continue to roll in preseason

Four weeks of preseason action have now come to a conclusion, and the majority of the Florida Gators‘ 10 rookies have been regularly participating for their respective teams. OGGOA takes a look at how they have been performing thus far with only one more week to go before the 2010-11 NFL regular season begins.

QB TIM TEBOW, Denver Broncos
Game 3 Passing: 5-of-10 for 72 yards, one TD, one INT (14.4 avg., 67.5 QB rating)
Game 2: Did not play – ribs
Game 1 Passing: 8-of-13 for 105 yards (8.1 avg., 87.0 QB rating)
Game 1 Rushing: Two carries for 10 yards, one touchdown

CB JOE HADEN, Cleveland Browns
Game 3 Defense: Five tackles (two solo), one pass defended
Game 3 Kick returning: one attempt for 12 yards
Game 2 Defense: Two tackles (one solo), two passes defended
Game 2 Kick returning: Two attempts for 43 yards (long 28)
Game 1 Defense: Three solo tackles, one pass defended
Game 1 Kick returning: One attempt for 34 yards

C MAURKICE POUNCEY, Pittsburgh Steelers
Game 3: Worked as first-team center
Game 2: Worked as first-team center
Game 1: Worked as first-team guard, second-team center

LB JERMAINE CUNNINGHAM, New England Patriots
Game 3: Did not play – undisclosed
Game 2: Did not play – undisclosed
Game 1: Did not play – concussion

DE CARLOS DUNLAP, Cincinnati Bengals
Game 4 Defense: One tackle (one solo), two QB hits
Game 3 Defense: Four tackles (three solo), one sack, one Gator Chomp
Game 2 Defense: One tackle
Game 1 Defense: Did not play – concussion

LB BRANDON SPIKES, New England Patriots
Game 3 Defense: Seven tackles (five solo), one QB hit
Game 2 Defense: Three solo tackles
Game 1 Defense: Eight tackles (three solo) [team-high]

S MAJOR WRIGHT, Chicago Bears
Game 3: Did not play – finger
Game 2: Did not play – finger
Game 1 Defense: Seven tackles (six solo)

TE AARON HERNANDEZ, New England Patriots
Game 3: Did not play – undisclosed
Game 2 Receiving: Four receptions for 46 yards [team-highs], one touchdown
Game 1 Receiving: Three receptions for 26 yards (long 21)
Game 1 Rushing: One carry for six yards

WR RILEY COOPER, Philadelphia Eagles
Game 3 Receiving: Three receptions for 39 yards [T-team highs], one touchdown
Game 2 Receiving: Two receptions for 22 yards
Game 2 Special Teams: Two tackles
Game 1 Receiving: Three receptions for 61 yards (long 46) [team-high]

WR DAVID NELSON, Buffalo Bills
Game 3: Two receptions for 34 yards, one touchdown
Game 2: Did not play – ankle
Game 1 Receiving: Five receptions for 47 yards [team-highs], one touchdown

KR BRANDON JAMES, Indianapolis Colts
Game 3 Kick returning: Six attempts for 144 yards (avg. 24, long 34)
Game 3 Punt returning: Two attempts for six yards, one fumble
Game 2 Punt returning: Two attempts for 22 yards (long 19)
Game 1 Kick returning: Four attempts for 99 yards (avg. 24.8, long 28)
Game 1 Punt returning: One attempt for five yards
Game 1 Receiving: One reception for two yards

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