We started with 23 former Gophers in NFL training camps as the preseason got underway. Some were cut early in camp, some made it all the way to the final cut date, and some are safely on an active 53-man roster as the NFL season is set to begin next week. Below is a recap of all the roster transactions and where the former Gophers currently sit, whether it be an active roster, a practice squad, or sitting out on the free agent market awaiting a phone call.
Gophers on an Active 53-man Roster at of 9/2/22
Antoine Winfield Jr—CB
The Bucs will have a pair of Gophers on their roster this fall as obviously Antoine Winfield, Jr will start at safety for the Buccaneers and they decided that Ko Kieft had done enough blocking of everybody to earn a 4th TE spot on the roster. We will see what Kieft’s roll will be and how often he will be active during the season, but the 6th round pick made the final cutdown.
We did lose one former Gopher from Tampa as the Bucs surprisingly decided to cut wide receiver Tyler Johnson. As you will find out below, he quickly caught on with another roster however.
Blake Cashman- LB
The Houston Texans win the award as the team with the most former Gophers on it this season as both Eric Murray and Blake Cashman made the final 53-man roster cuts, and the Texans put in a waiver claim and picked up Tyler Johnson after he was cut by Tampa Bay. Hopefully Johnson can show the spark he had in limited opportunity with Tampa in Houston, but going from Tom Brady to Davis Mills will be quite the adjustment.
No surprises here in Baltimore as both former Gophers make the 53-man roster. Bateman is looking at a potential breakout season as the #1 wide out for Baltimore while Faalele will most likely start on the bench early in the season.
Damien Wilson made the final 53-man roster for the Panthers and will have a good shot at a starting spot in the middle of Carolina’ s defense.
It came down to onw of the final cuts, but Esezi Otemewo did make the Vikings final 53-man roster. The new Vikings regime decided to keep many o their own draft picks from this past season and cut bail with several players selected recently by former GM Rick Spielman. Esezi has a long way to go before he likely has a regular role on the Vikings D.
No doubt on this one.
Benjamin St. Juste—CB
Another easy one. St. Juste will hopefully see some starter reps in Week 1
The Gopher rookie with the potential to make the most impact in 2022. This guy would be our choice. He definitely has the potential to create havoc on NFC quarterbacks this fall.
Coughlin will be a backup linebacker and should figure regularly on special teams for the Giants.
Williams is coming back from his injury faster than expected and made the final 53-man roster with no injury exemption. He’s listed as the backup tight end behind Zach Ertz for the Cardinals but should see plenty of reps especially in blocking situations.
Gophers currently on Practice Squads as of 9/2/22
NFL teams are still adding players to practice squads a week out from the season, and this can be a fluid situation...you are on the roster one week and the next, you’re out.
Micah Dew-Treadway-DL—Chicago Bears
After playing well for the Bears in camp, MDT was cut in the final roster cutdown but was eagerly brought back onto the practice squad by the Bears.
Chris Streveler-QB—New York Jets
Streveler is still in New York with the Jets but not on the active roster
Current Free Agents:
Seth Green -TE
Green was cut by the Texans at the end of camp and is till looking for a job
Martin was released with an injury settlement by Carolina early in camp.
LB Jack Gibbons
Maybe the most surprising, Gibbons was great in camp and then the Titans passed him over for a practice squad spot. He probably will find something soon, but it is definitely surprising he didn’t catch on elsewhere yet.
CB Chris Williamson
Cut early in camp with an injury designation by the Titans.
The Dolphins at the end of camp and then signed other OL to their practice squad, so it’s unknown what’s next for Blaise
Santoso was a surprise cut by Jacksonville after he was the lone kicker left on their roster, but they decided to go a different way. He then caught on with the New York Giants for a week but as injury insurance and was cut in the final cuts. He’s shown he can be a good emergency kicker so he will most likely end up on a roster somewhere at sometime during the season.
Schuleter was cut with an injury designation by the 49ers, so it is unknown whats next for him as well.
Week 1 for the 14 rostered former Gophers kicks off next week, but with no Gophers on either the Bills or Rams roster we will need to wait until Sunday to see our first action of Gophers in the NFL.