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Minnesota Football: Gophers in the NFL Week 1

Welcome to the NFL Antoine Winfield Jr

NFL: Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

And we are back. Nine former Minnesota Golden Gophers dressed for Week 1 of the NFL season last week and a majority of them saw the field. We saw one rookie jump right in like he always belonged and a couple of the Gopher vets do what they usually do week in and week out. Here is a recap of how the Gopher alums did in the NFL in Week 1 and a look ahead to the Week 2 schedule.

Maxx Williams— Tight End— Arizona Cardinals

Week 1 @ San Francisco 49ers

Week 2 vs Washington Football Club

Maxx started at tight end for the Cardinals and ended up playing 43 snaps—or just over 50% of the offensive downs for Arizona in their opening win over the 49ers. Maxx was targeted twice by Kyler Murray but did not haul in a pass in the game. The Cardinals will now host Washington in which one team will be a surprising 2-0 after the game.

De’Vondre Campbell—Linebacker—Arizona Cardinals

Week 1 @ San Francisco 49ers

Week 2 vs Washington Football Club

Campbell picked up in Arizona right where he left off in Atlanta. Campbell played all 62 defensive snaps for the Cardinals and recorded five tackles in Arizona’s win.

Chris Streveler-QB-Arizona Cardinals

Week 1 @ San Francisco 49ers

Week 2 vs Washington Football Club

Remember when Streveler was going to be the #3 quarterback in Arizona. Yeah, he’s actually the #2 for the Cardinals and got in for two snaps last Sunday. Streveler took one direct snap when he lined up in a full house backfield and gained three yards on a third and one. He also played one special teams snap as the upback in a punt formation. Not bad for a guy who was in the CFL a year ago. Streveler looks to be the #2 in Arizona going forward and will probably see some additional gimmick snaps in future games.

Eric Murray—Safety—Houston Texans

Week 1 @ Kansas City Chiefs (TNF)

Week 2 vs Baltimore Ravens

Murray started at safety for the Texans in the season opener last Thursday at Kansas City. He played 67 snaps on defense—or 97% of the plays for Houston. Murray recorded three tackles and assisted on four more in Houston’s loss. The Texans now go home to open up against another tough qb in Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens.

Damien Wilson—Linebacker—Kansas City Chiefs

Week 1 Vs Houston Texans (TNF)

Week 2 @ Los Angeles Chargers

Wilson started at linebacker for the Chiefs as they started the defense of their Super Bowl title with a win over Houston. Wilson played just 20 snaps as the Chiefs went with a nickel package a majority of the game and he recorded one tackle and assisted on one more. Kc heads on the road to Los Angeles for the Chargers opener in their new shared SOFI Stadium with the Rams.

Blake Cashman—Linebacker—New York Jets

Week 1 @ Buffalo Bills

Week 2 vs San Francisco 49ers

Cashman played in his first game since going out with a shoulder injury halfway through the season a year ago in the Jets opening loss at Buffalo. Unfortunately for Blake, his return was short lived. Cashman played in just three snaps for the Jets before exiting with a groin injury. He was placed on IR by the Jets on Tuesday and will miss at least three weeks as he works his way back. Another unfortunate start to his second NFL season.

Antoine Winfield Jr. —Safety—Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Week 1 @ New Orleans Saints

Week 2 vs Carolina Panthers

Antoine Winfield wasted no time in his first NFL game recording a tackle on his forst NFL play. He played all 68 defensive snaps for the Buccaneers as they lost their opener to the Saints. Winfield would record three tackles, assist on three more, got a hit on Drew Brees, and earned a pass defense on a diving deflection in the end zone. According to Pro Football Focus, Winfield graded out as the 4th best rookie in Week 1. He also earned the alum of the week award from the Gopher football Program.

Tyler Johnson-WR-Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Week 1 @ Buffalo Bills

Week 2 vs Carolina Panthers

Johnson was inactive for the Week 1 game as he works himself back from several small injuries in training camp.

Carter Coughlin-LB-New York Giants

Week 1 vs Pittsburgh Steelers (MNF)

Week 2 @ Chicago Bears

Coughlin didn’t take any defensive snaps for the Giants in their Monday Night Football opener but did earn 12 special teams snaps in the Giants loss to Pittsburgh. He didn’t record any stats, but it’s only a matter of time with a motor like his until he makes a special teams play. He will play closer to home next week when the Giants head to Chicago for their second game of the season.