Although football season has come to an end, I figured I'd make a list of some of the most notable Ducks in the NFL. Due to there being an outrageous amount of alums in the league, 33, I'm just going to touch on some of the most impressive.
Kiko Alonso, LB Dolphins
The quick and agile linebacker was drafted in round 2 of the 2013 draft, but is making an immediate impact. His 2015-16 season with the Eagles wasn't as expected due to injury, which lead to a trade to Miami. The now healthy Alonso posted 115 combined tackles, 2 interceptions, and 4 fumble recoveries in Miami's best season since 2008.
LeGarette Blount, RB Patriots
As a 30 year old, Blount had the best season of his career. The powerful back recorded just under 1,200 yards, 18 touchdowns (1st in the NFL), and helped lead the New England Patriots to their 5th Super Bowl victory. Like wine, you could argue Blount just gets better with age.
Patrick Chung, S Patriots
Serving in his 8th season, the veteran safety helped lead the #1 scoring defense in the league to their second Super Bowl in 3 seasons. Just like the man mentioned above, Chung also gets better with age. With 91 combined tackles and 1 interception, the safety is arguably having the best season of his career.
Marcus Mariota, QB Titans
The former Heisman Trophy winner was having an impressive sophomore season until suffering a fractured fibula at the end of last season. Mariota threw for 3,400 yards, 26 touchdowns, and boasted a 95.6 QBR prior to the week 16 injury. Don't be surprised if you see the Titans in the playoffs for years to come
Haloti Ngata, DT Lions
Ngata, the 11 year vet and 5 time Pro Bowler, may have the most impressive resume of everyone mentioned on this list. You may remember him as a dominant factor on on some of the most stout Ravens defenses, but Ngata now helps contribute to a strong Detroit defensive line.
Jonathan Stewart, RB Panthers
A key piece of the 2015-16 Super Bowl team, Stewart bounced back and posted over 800 yards and 9 touchdowns this year. The former Duck is 200 yards shy of breaking Carolina's rushing record, set by DeAngelo Williams, and 2 touchdowns away from claiming 2nd most in franchise history.
T.J. Ward, S Broncos
A leader of the 2015-16 Super Bowl champion, Denver Broncos, the 2 time Pro Bowler is one of the premier safeties in the NFL. Ward boosted the Broncos defense with 87 combined tackles, 1 interception, and 3 forced fumbles this past season.
Kyle Long, G Bears
I can't forget about the most overlooked unit in football, the offensive line. Long established his dominance as soon as he entered the league, making his way to 3 straight Pro Bowls. The guard wasn't selected this year as he dealt with injury, but expect to see him back in his next complete season.
As you can see, Oregon has some impressive players in the league. Hopefully I can do this in a year or two and add some different names to the list! Post a comment and let me know what you think or if I left any big names out.