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Beavers In The NFL: 2020 Training Camp Outlook

The alumni are returning to the gridiron.

Arizona Cardinals v Los Angeles Rams Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images
Baltimore Ravens v Los Angeles Rams
Brandin Cooks
Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The Stars

Analysis: Brandin Cooks was sent from Los Angeles to Houston this off-season, in a wild couple months for the Texans as they try to rebuild their roster without star target DeAndre Hopkins, as well as guys like Carlos Hyde, Lamar Miller, DJ Reader and Johnathan Joseph. Cooks should mesh well with Houston quarterback Deshaun Watson from the get-go, as the speedy pass catcher is still the first player in NFL history to total 1,000 receiving yards in three consecutive seasons with three different teams. Change hasn’t always been bad for Cooks like it was in the City of Angels. Punter Johnny Hekker still sits as the league’s best punter and there’s not much more to say about that.

NCAA Football: Stanford at Oregon State
Isaiah Hodgins
Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

The Rookies

Analysis: Blake Brandel and Clay Cordasco both entering their respective training camps with something to prove, as the sixth round pick in Brandel and the undrafted free agent in Cordasco know nothing is promised. Despite solid collegiate careers, they’ll have to prove their worth to keep a slot on the depth chart. While Isaiah Hodgins was a sixth round pick, the trendy and taller talent could join a great wide receivers room in Buffalo, which has it’s pros and cons. Another sixth round choice and another towering piece in Jake Luton will have to beat out reserves Josh Dobbs and Mike Glennon for the third-spot on the Jaguars depth chart and former Beaver Artavis Pierce signed with Chicago, to challenge his fellow alumni Ryan Nall for a jersey number. Noah Togiai rounds out the group as another one fighting to earn his spot on the 53-man squad.

The Veterans

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles
Isaac Seumalo
Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Analysis: Josh Andrews, Sean Mannion and Matt Moore have all been reduced to strictly reserves at this point in their careers, with Andrews maybe having the best shot at seeing time on a Jets team where you never know what to expect. The defensive back duo of Steven Nelson and Jordan Poyer are entering their sixth and eighth years in the league respectively and both have found their comfort levels at this point. Poyer has a monster 2019, tallying 107 tackles, 3 forced fumbles and 2 interceptions. The ageless Mike Remmers will probably be asked to outwork his one-year deal with the Super Bowl contending Chiefs, especially if injuries play a role. As for Isaac Seumalo, the 6’ 4”, 300-pounder has carved out a nice role for himself in Philadelphia.

Miami Dolphins v Buffalo Bills
Victor Bolden Jr.
Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

The Bubble Guys

Analysis: Unfortunately for Victor Bolden Jr., his role in the NFL has basically been reduced to a special teams returner, which doesn’t bode well for a spot on any roster in the long-term. The speedy talent has struggled to catch on as a wide receiver. Sean Harlow hasn’t made the strides Atlanta might’ve hoped for and he has potential to lose his place on the squad, in somewhat similar fashion to Ryan Nall’s situation in Chicago. The truth of the matter is, if you’re not a special talent in the NFL, it’s hard to last. Ricky Ortiz enters a fullback battle in New Orleans, which places him on shaky ground, while Kyle Peko was the first Denver player to choose to opt out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns.