Oregon players make strong showing in NFL
- Kerry Eggers
- Portland Tribune - Sports
Aside from Nick Barnett, Ryan Longwell and Josh Bidwell of the Green Bay Packers, only two other players with state-of-Oregon connections are still in the NFL playoffs.
Ex-Oregon Ducks Peter Sirmon (Tennessee) and A.J. Feeley (Philadelphia) are hoping their teams advance. Tennessee plays at New England on Saturday, while Philadelphia plays host to Green Bay on Sunday.
The 6-2, 240-pound Sirmon started all season at outside linebacker and was second on the Titans in tackles (86). Feeley is the Eagles' third-string QB and hasn't played all season.
A season summary of various other NFL players with ties to the Portland area or the state of Oregon:
James Allen, New Orleans: The reserve linebacker from Jefferson High and OSU had 17 tackles and one kickoff return for eight yards.
Brad Badger, Oakland: The 6-4, 320-pound offensive guard from Corvallis High started 11 of 16 games in his seventh NFL season.
Rashad Bauman, Washington: The ex-Duck cornerback had 24 tackles in backup and special teams duty.
Drew Bledsoe, Buffalo: The former Washington State QB, who makes his offseason home in Portland, had a disappointing year for a Buffalo team that lost 10 of its last 14 games. Bledsoe completed 274 of 471 passes for 2,860 yards with 11 TDs and 12 interceptions. He was sacked 49 times and was 21st in passer rating at 73.0.
Travis Claridge, Atlanta: The 6-5, 300-pound offensive guard from Fort Vancouver High missed much of his fourth NFL season with a leg injury, but he started all six games in which he played.
Reuben Droughns, Denver: The reserve running back from Oregon carried six times for 14 yards, had nine receptions for 87 yards and two TDs, and returned 12 kickoffs for a 24.4 average with a long of 36 during the regular season. In the playoff loss to Indian--apolis, Droughns caught five passes for 19 yards and returned six kickoffs for a 22.2 average.
Scott Gragg, San Francisco: The 6-8, 325-pound offensive tackle from Silverton High started 14 games, completing his ninth year in the league and his eighth as a starter.
DeLawrence Grant, Oakland: The third-year ex-Beaver defensive end had 18 tackles and a sack as a reserve.
Joey Harrington, Detroit: Harrington had his ups and downs in his second NFL season, finishing last for the second straight year in passer rating at 63.9. The former Central Catholic High and UO standout completed 309 of 554 passes for 2,880 yards with 17 touchdowns and 22 interceptions. He was sacked only nine times.
T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Cincinnati: The receiver from OSU, who struggled with a hamstring injury, was activated for two games this season but did not catch a pass.
Keenan Howry, Minnesota: The ex-Duck caught two passes for 15 yards, returned 35 punts for a 7.1 average with a long of 52, and returned 12 kickoffs for a 22.6 average with a long of 42.
LaDairis Jackson, Cincinnati: The ex-OSU defensive end, who started the season with Washington, was waived by both teams.
Chad Johnson, Cincinnati: The ex-Oregon State receiver had a brilliant third season, ranking fourth in the NFL while setting a franchise record in receiving yards (1,355) and finishing eighth in receptions with 90. Johnson will be a starter in the Pro Bowl next month.
Patrick Johnson, Washington: The ex-Duck caught 15 passes for 170 yards and a TD, returned 13 kickoffs for a 23.8 average with a long of 50, and returned three punts for 17 yards.
James Lee, Green Bay: Rookie defensive tackle from OSU spent the season on the injured list with a back injury.
Rian Lindell, Buffalo: The graduate of Vancouver's Mountain View High and Washington State made 17 of 24 field-goal attempts, including 14 of 15 tries from inside 40 yards.
Wesly Mallard, New York Giants: The reserve linebacker from Oregon had 15 tackles.
Maurice Morris, Seattle: The former Duck was the Seahawks' No. 2 rusher with 239 yards on 38 carries for a 6.3 average. He also caught four passes for 32 yards and a score and returned 47 kickoffs for a 21.4 average with a long of 56.
Preston Parsons, Arizona: The Jesuit High graduate was the Cardinals' third-string QB and didn't take a snap this fall.
Troy Polomalu, Pittsburgh: The rookie from Douglas High had 38 tackles as a backup safety and special-teams player, and also had two sacks.
Terrell Roberts, Cincinnati: The rookie cornerback from Oregon State had 19 tackles, one interception and one sack in a reserve role and special teams.
Onterrio Smith, Minnesota: The rookie from Oregon was the Vikings' No. 2 rusher with 579 yards on 107 carries for an excellent 5.4 average, with five TDs. In a 45-20 win over Kansas City on Dec. 20, Smith carried 21 times for 146 yards and three scores. He also returned 27 kickoffs for a 21.8 average.
Reggie Tongue, Seattle: The veteran safety from Oregon State was fifth on the Seahawks with 70 tackles, led the team with four interceptions, and had two sacks and a fumble recovery. He had three tackles in the playoff loss to Green Bay.
Dennis Weathersby, Cincinnati: The rookie cornerback from Oregon State was inactive for the first eight games, then played in four games but made no tackles.
Jed Weaver, San Francisco: The fifth-year tight end from Oregon had a career-high 35 catches, ranking second on the 49ers, for 437 yards and a TD. He started all 16 games.
James Whalen, Dallas: The former LaSalle High tight end made five tackles on special teams.
Mitch White, Washington: The former OSU offensive tackle was on the Redskin roster for two games this season. He has agreed to participate in Green Bay's summer training camp.
Kailee Wong, Houston: The veteran linebacker from North Eugene High tied for fifth on the Texans with 62 tackles and was second on the team with three sacks.
George Wrighster, Jacksonville: The rookie tight end from Oregon caught 13 passes for 150 yards and two TDs, plus made three tackles on special teams.