August 8, 2008
Catching up on the NFL Hokies
The big news from Thursday night was the play of David Clowney. The Florida product was sensational against the Browns, hauling in four receptions for 163 yards and two touchdowns. His scores covered 71 and 70 yards to lead the New York Jets to a win on the road. Clowney was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 2007, but never played and signed with the Jets last season. He will once again have the chance to play with Brett Favre, who was traded to New York on Thursday.
Justin Harper, who is trying to make the Baltimore Ravens as a wide receiver, caught one pass for 18 yards Thursday night against the New England Patriots. He started the third quarter and played the entire second half.
“It was great to be on the field again, but at the same time, this is all brand new to me,” Harper said. “I had some jitters coming out of the tunnel, seeing guys like Randy Moss on the other sideline, but that quickly went away and it was good to just go out and play football. I feel like I belong out here, but you never know what will happen. I just have to go out there and keep performing because you never know when you could be cut.”
Based on the number of interview requests for Tech coaches thus far from California media, receiver Josh Morgan (#84) is doing well for the 49ers. Reports say he could start tonight against Jake Grove, DeAngelo Hall and the Oakland Raiders, and he is making a push to make the team and to play. Also keep an eye on undrafted free agent D.J. Parker, who is wearing No. 41. He is battling to make the team and should play at free safety and special teams. He is third on the depth chart, but starter Mark Roman is hurt, so Parker could see a lot of action in the second half.
Brandon Flowers, a second-round draft pick, got the start at cornerback Thursday night for the Kansas City Chiefs and was credited with a tackle. All reports say he has locked up the starting spot for the Chiefs.
Duane Brown, a first-round pick of the Houston Texans wearing his familiar No. 76, is scheduled to start at left tackle Saturday night against the Denver Broncos. He won’t be the only Hokie starting in that game as receiver Eddie Royal, who wears No. 19 now, has been elevated to the No. 1 spot for Denver based on his impressive camp. Also look for fellow Hokies Brandon Frye (#73, third-string OT), André Davis (#11, second-string WR) and 2008 third-round pick Xavier Adibi (#52, second-string WLB) to see the field for the Texans. Carlton Powell was drafted by the Broncos, but is out for the year with a torn Achilles.
Defensive end Chris Ellis is second on the depth chart behind Chris Kelsay for the Buffalo Bills and makes his debut Saturday night.
Free agent Barry Booker is still hanging around with the Tennessee Titans and makes his debut Saturday night. He is joined in Tennessee by Vincent Fuller. Vince Hall and Josh Hyman were released and Kory Robertson retired. Finally, Justin Hamilton has re-signed with the Washington Redskins after being released May 30. He will play Saturday night against Ellis and the Bills.
NFL rosters must be cut down to a max of 75 players by Aug. 26 and then to the 53-man squad on Aug. 30. On Sept. 2, NFL teams can sign up to eight players to their practice squad and the season starts Sept. 4.
For updates on Virginia Tech football, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Football).