Former Gators in the NFL: 2014 Preseason Week 2

By Adam Silverstein
August 19, 2014

The 2014 NFL preseason continued with 46 former Florida Gators spread out over 23 of the 32 teams in the league.

Fifteen teams have multiple Florida players on their rosters including Miami and Tampa Bay (four each); Baltimore, Indianapolis and Philadelphia (three each); and Buffalo, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Denver, Kansas City, Minnesota, N.Y. Jets, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and Washington (two each).

Below are full game statistics for all 35 players that saw action along with select updates on some Gators during the second week of the preseason.

WR Deonte Thompson: Target; three kickoff returns for 188 yards, touchdown (108-yard return)

Check out how the rest of the Gators in the NFL performed…after the break!

OT Max Starks: Played as a reserve

S Matt Elam: Started | solo tackle
S Will Hill: Played as a reserve
» Hill will be suspended for the first six games of the season for drug use.
WR Deonte Thompson: Target; three kickoff returns for 188 yards, touchdown (108-yard return)

DT Damien Jacobs*: Played as a reserve
LB Brandon Spikes: Started | two solo tackles (one for loss)

LB Jon Bostic: Three solo tackles (one for loss), pass defense

DE Carlos Dunlap: Started
S Reggie Nelson: Started

QB Rex Grossman: Did not play
» Grossman was signed by Cleveland last week after its first preseason game.
CB Joe Haden: Started | solo tackle, pass defense, interception (37-yard return)

DE Jeremy Mincey: Started | solo tackle
» Mincey is the first player out of UF on Dallas’s roster since 2002 (Emmitt Smith).

WR Andre Caldwell: Started | target
LB Lerentee McCray: Started | three solo tackles
» McCray missed his entire rookie season in 2013 with an ankle injury.

C Jonotthan Harrison*: Started
OT Xavier Nixon: Did not play/injured (knee)
» Nixon had a knee scope last Friday and is expected to miss two more weeks.
CB Loucheiz Purifoy*: Two tackles (one solo, one for loss); two punt returns for 37 yards (long 24)

S Josh Evans: Solo tackle, pass defense, interception (eight-yard return)

WR Frankie Hammond, Jr.: Three receptions for 57 yards (targets: 5, long: 33); two kickoff returns for 56 yards (long: 31)
» Hammond spent his rookie year in 2013 on Kansas City’s practice squad.
DE Jaye Howard: Started | two tackles

RB Mike Gillislee: Did not play/injured (hamstring)
LB Jelani Jenkins: Three tackles (two solo)
C Mike Pouncey: Physically Unable to Perform – hip
K Caleb Sturgis: Did not play/injured (groin)

DT Sharrif Floyd: Started | tackle
DE Justin Trattou: Two QB hits

DT Dominique Easley*: Did not play (precautionary)
» Easley is still recovering from a torn ACL suffered during his senior season at Florida.
OG Jon Halapio*: Played as a reserve

LB Ronald Powell*: Two tackles

DE Jermaine Cunningham: Injured Reserve (torn ACL – season)
WR David Nelson: Started | two receptions for nine yards (targets: 4); solo tackle

TE Trey Burton*: Reception for 18 yards
WR Riley Cooper: Did not play/injured (foot)
DB Jaylen Watkins*: Did not play/injured (hamstring)

OT Marcus Gilbert: Started
C Maurkice Pouncey: Started

DT Ray McDonald: Did not play (precautionary)

WR Percy Harvin: Started | four receptions [team-high] for 31 yards (targets: 5, long: 11)

CB Janoris Jenkins: Did not play/injured (hamstring)
CB Marcus Roberson*: Solo tackle

RB Jeff Demps: Eight carries [team-high] for 31 yards (long: 7), fumble (recovered); two targets
» Demps has played just two games in two NFL seasons after being stashed on injured reserve in 2012 by the Patriots and placed on IR by the Bucs (groin) in 2013.
WR Louis Murphy: Reception for 11 yards (targets: 2)
WR Solomon Patton*: Reception for eight yards (targets: 4); three kickoff returns for 91 yards (long 33), three punt returns for 32 yards (long: 21)
S Major Wright: Solo tackle

OL Maurice Hurt: Played as a reserve
TE Jordan Reed: Started | two receptions for 20 yards (long: 15)
» Reed only played nine games as a rookie, missing seven (six-straight to end the season) due to concussion-related symptoms.

Veterans: S Ahmad Black, OL Cooper Carlisle, P Chas Henry, RB Chris Rainey, QB Tim Tebow
Rookies: LB Darrin Kitchens*, OL Kyle Koehne*

* Rookie


  1. SC Gator says:

    This is the point in the pro season where I stop and wonder at the fact Thompson has managed to knock the stone from his hands and turn into a effective and productive pro player. Just remarkable, I’d have wagered he’d not make it past his first season, if that, but I’m delighted to have been wrong.

    • Dave Massey says:

      Now that he is motivated by money we see how good he can be. He was always clearly “saving” himself for the pros, it happens. Same thing with Will Hill. Heck, Clowney pretty much did the same thing last year too, the only difference is he put out the effort before that to prove he was a Number one.

      • Michael Jones says:

        I usually agree with you, Dave, but strongly disagree with both of you on this one. This is to me another illustration of what nonsense it is and has always been every time I read that we didn’t have talent at the WR position those years. Hog wash. The Gators ALWAYS have talent at the skill positions.

        We didn’t have talent at the coaching position those years–that’s where we were lacking–and one of the way that lack of talent was reflected was in the failure to utilize the pass catching talent that we had on those teams.

        Even Jordan Reed was grossly underused. Frankie Hammond. Omarius Hines. All super talents not properly utilized and that was all on the coaching staff.

        • Dave Massey says:

          Hey Michael,

          We are going to have to agree to disagree on this one.

          Hill played defense and we have not lacked for defensive coaching since Spurrier was here.

          I will agree that the offensive coaching has been less than stellar or imaginative, not to mention less than average quarterback play since Tebow. But the player we were talking about was Deonte Thompson specifically and like SC said, he had hands of stone. He dropped quite a number of passes that were right in his hands. He looked like he was trying to catch the ball with boxing gloves on.

          I go to a number of Gator games every year and you get a lot more perspective when you can see the whole field and all the players every play. Hill and Thompson, flat out didn’t “bring it” and it was obvious they were trying to avoid big hits. With the amount of money that is involved in pro football nowadays I’m not sure I can blame them. But they were definitely not team first guys, that’s all I’m saying. Won’t argue that they both were extremely talented.

          As one pro football player said, “for ninety to ninety five percent of the guys in an NFL locker room it is a job and they are trying not to get injured to keep collecting those fat paychecks as long as they can, only five to ten percent are really playing all out for the love of the game”. That to me seems to be the trend now in college also, hence the comment about Clowney, who had how many sacks last year? The same guy that held himself out of games for an injury that the coach wasn’t aware of.

          • gatorboi352 says:

            “But the player we were talking about was Deonte Thompson specifically and like SC said, he had hands of stone. He dropped quite a number of passes that were right in his hands. He looked like he was trying to catch the ball with boxing gloves on.”

            Yet in the pros he’s suddenly a competent receiver? It’s lack of coaching, this isn’t up for debate.

            • Dave Massey says:

              I believe it is up for debate. The guy tanked it the whole four years he was here. It’s not the coaches fault if the player refuses to put out effort. And his success in the last game had nothing to do with pass catching. He had one ball thrown his way that he didn’t catch. His success came from kick returns.

  2. cline says:

    Urbs had us loaded with talent there is no doubting that.

    • Dave Massey says:

      They were also thugs and criminals. Also, a bunch of drug users, i.e., Hill and Hernandez. The program is still paying the price of his lack of discipline and control. He let these clowns do whatever they wanted as long as it got him what he wanted on Saturdays, to me the guy is a black stain in spite of the winning. And just for the record I am NOT including ALL of his players in this.

      • gatorboi352 says:

        Right, and Muschamp has nothing but choir boys. Look, with winning comes fame (yes, even in Gainesville) and with fame comes many more opportunities to be involved in activities one wouldn’t/shouldn’t be involved in. And as 18-22 year old kids, its easy to slip into that trap.

        • Dave Massey says:

          The number of arrests under Muschamp has been drastically less than it was under the Urbanator. Went almost a year without any legal issues recently. There were also many more incidents involving violence under Meyer. A number of arrests during Muschamps early time were Meyer recruits. Bottom line is the players were out of control under Meyer and there was no discipline meted out. At least Muschamp cracks the whip on guys.

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