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Ducks Quackin’ a Roster Spot

Royce Freeman celebrates touchdown
Royce Freeman celebrates touchdown in second quarter against the Chicago Bears.
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The preseason is all wrapped up and NFL teams have made their final cuts to get down to their 53-man rosters. Here’s a look at what current Ducks like Royce Freeman are doing in the NFL.

Defensive players by position

Defensive End:

Arik Armstead, San Francisco 49ers – Coming off an offseason foot surgery Armstead may miss several weeks, but the 49ers are hopeful he’ll be ready week 1 despite not playing yet in the preseason.

Deforest Buckner, San Francisco 49ers – The third-year pro is making a bit of a position change to interior lineman as the 49ers have him slotted in as their starting right defensive tackle.

Dion Jordan, Seattle Seahawks – Jordan was activated off the PUP list Saturday, but his status for week 1 is still unclear. Jordan is in his second season with the Seahawks and hopes to turn what looked to be a promising career around, before running into problems keeping him away from football for the 2015 and 2016 seasons.

Defensive Tackle:

Henry Mondeaux, New Orleans Saints – New Orleans waived the undrafted rookie free agent Saturday to get to their 53-man roster.

Haloti Ngata, Philadelphia Eagles - 5X Pro-Bowler and 2012 Super Bowl champion with the Baltimore Ravens. Ngata is entering his 13th season in the NFL and first with the Eagles.


(The Legend himself) Kiko Alonso, Miami Dolphins – In his 3rd season with the Dolphins, Alonso’s legend continues after racking up an incredible 159 combined tackles with the Buffalo Bills his rookie season. Week 2 of the preseason, Alonso mustered up five combined tackles including four solo.

Joe Walker, Philadelphia Eagles – Walker missed his entire 2016 rookie season with an ACL tear, but played 12 games in 2017 with the Eagles earning him a Super Bowl ring. Walker was cut to make room for D.J. Alexander.

Tony Washington Jr., Tennessee Titans – Resigned with the Titans August 12 after being waived in 2017. Washington failed to make the 53-man roster and was once again cut from the 2018 roster.


Troy Hill, Los Angeles Rams – This is a contract year for Hill. If the playmaker that Pro Football Focus rated as one of the best players for the Rams in their playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons can show up, there could be a nice little payday in his future.

Terrance Mitchell, Cleveland Browns – Signed with the Browns in the offseason after an impressive 2017 season with the Kansas City Chiefs where he recorded four interceptions. Mitchell’s contract is a three-year $10 million deal and will be starting for the Browns at cornerback.

NFL: Oakland Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs
Mitchell defends pass
Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Arrion Springs, Kansas City Chiefs – Coming on to the Chiefs as an UDFA, Springs signed a three-year $1.71 million rookie deal, but was cut by Kansas City to get down to their 53-man roster. He now resides on the Chiefs’ practice squad.


Patrick Chung, New England Patriots – The 2X Super Bowl Champion is playing his 10th season in the NFL, 9th with the Patriots. New England signed Chung on March 18, to a two-year $7.8 million deal with $5.12 million guaranteed.

Eddie Pleasant, New England Patriots – Pleasant was waived from New England after battling for a spot as a reserve/special-teamer.

Tyree Robinson, Dallas Cowboys – UDFA Robinson signed with the Cowboys as a rookie and is slotted in as second-string behind free safety Xavier Woods.

Offensive players by position

Offensive Tackle:

Tyrell Crosby, Detroit Lions – Detroit effectively stole Crosby in the 5th round of the 2018 NFL draft. He is currently slotted in as the Lions backup left tackle to Taylor Decker. Crosby was rated as the fourth best tackle in the 2018 draft by PFF.

Jake Fisher, Cincinnati Bengals – Starting for the Bengals at right tackle. Fisher was cleared to play after having heart surgery to correct an irregular heartbeat that sidelined him in November of 2017.

Taylor Hart, Philadelphia Eagles – For those who don’t remember, Hart played defensive tackle for the Ducks and moved to the offensive side of the ball after being drafted by the Eagles in 2014. Hart was a part of the final cuts Saturday by Philadelphia to get down to 53.


Alex Balducci, New York Jets – Another defensive tackle for the Ducks turned offensive lineman. Balducci was cut by New York on Saturday to reach their final roster.

Cameron Hunt, Oakland Raiders – Hunt was waived Saturday after Oakland brought him on to compete for an interior lineman position.

Kyle Long, Da Bears – Son of Raiders legend Howie Long, Kyle Long is a 3X Pro-Bowler from 2013-15 and was selected to the 2014 All-Pro second team.


Hroniss Grasu, Da Bears – On the hot seat, Grasu’s days were numbered in Chicago after drafting center James Daniels in 2018. Grasu was cut to reach the 53-man roster per reports.

Max Unger, New Orleans Saints – Super Bowl XLVIII Champion with the Seattle Seahawks and 2X Pro-Bowler, Unger was traded to the Saints for tight end Jimmy Graham in the 2014-2015 offseason. He started all 16 games for the Saints in 2017 including two playoff games.

Tight End:

Evan Baylis, Carolina Panthers – Baylis was told to clean out his locker by the Panthers Saturday to get down to their final roster.

Pharaoh Brown, Oakland Raiders – Brown was waived by Oakland to reach their 53-man roster. He started one game for the Raiders in 2017.

Ed Dickson, Seattle Seahawks – Placed on the non-football injury list Saturday. Dickson appeared to be ready, but won’t see regular season football till midway through the season.

Johnny Mundt, Los Angeles Rams – Signing a reserve/future contract with the Rams, Mundt fought his way onto the Rams roster as a third-string tight end.


Marcus Mariota, Tennessee Titans – second overall pick in the first round by the Titans in 2015, Mariota is starting his fourth season as QB. Week 2 of the preseason, Mariota went 4/7 with 80 yards and a touchdown.

Running Back:

Kenjon Barner, Carolina Panthers – Carolina terminated Barner’s contract and released him as a part of the first wave of moves made by the Panthers.

LeGarrette Blount, Detroit Lions – 2X Super Bowl champion with New England. Blount won his third Super Bowl title with the Eagles, where he rushed for 90 yards including a 21-yard touchdown in the Eagles 41-33 victory over the Patriots. Blount is one of five players to ever win back-to-back Super Bowls with different teams. He’ll be in the mix to start for the Lions week 1.

Royce Freeman, Denver Broncos – Picked 71st overall in the third round of this year’s draft, Freeman was recently named starting running back for the Denver Broncos. The workhorse has scored a rushing touchdown in all three of his preseason games.

NFL: Chicago Bears at Denver Broncos
Freeman breaks tackle for six
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Byron Marshall, Washington Redskins – Placed on the IR with a sprained ACL and MCL according to Gruden.

Jonathan Stewart, New York Giants – The long-time Panther will be backing up the uber talented first round draft pick Saquon Barkley as he takes on a secondary role for the Giants in 2018.

Wide Receiver:

De’Anthony Thomas, Kansas City Chiefs – Coming into the NFL as a running back, Kansas City had Thomas make the switch to wide receiver. He re-signed with the Chiefs in March and reportedly rejected an offer for an extra $1.5 million to stay with Kansas City; he must like what they’re putting together over there.

Josh Huff, New Orleans Saints Huff was released by New Orleans Saturday.

Special Teams

Long Snapper:

Tanner Carew, Da Bears – The UDFA signed a rookie deal with the Bears, but didn’t make it past Saturday to get down to 53.

Notables playing in CFL


Vernon Adams Jr., Montreal Alouettes – Currently sidelined with a foot injury for two to six weeks.

Jeremiah Masoli, Hamilton Tiger-Cats – In his sixth season with the Tiger-Cats, Masoli is 4-5 and has thrown for 2,884 yards, 9 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

Running back:

Jeremiah Johnson, British Columbia Lions – Starting for the Lions at running back, Johnson has been dealing with a nagging ankle injury that has kept him out of several games this season.