Sep 5, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. -- A host of Northwestern Football alums are preparing to ply their trade at the highest level, getting set to kick off the 2013 NFL season this weekend. Seven former Wildcats stars earned spots on 53-man rosters in the league, with four more being signed to NFL practice squads.
Two former 'Cats will be matched up Week One on Sunday (Sept. 8) when cornerback Marquice Cole, a veteran of four NFL seaosns, travels with his New England Patriots to Buffalo, where 2010 Northwestern alum Corbin Bryant is in his first campaign as a member of the Bills' defensive line.
Defensive end Corey Wootton and cornerback Sherrick McManis, who together served as captains of the 2009 Wildcats team and were selected in the 2010 NFL draft, remain teammates with the hometown Chicago Bears. Their former teammate with the Bears, veteran linebacker Nick Roach, is ready to begin a new chapter in his tremendous NFL career after signing a four-year contract with the Oakland Raiders this offseason.
Two former NFL Super Bowl champions continue to succeed in the league, with offensive lineman Zach Strief
entering his eighth season with the New Orleans Saints and defensive tackle Barry Cofield
, who won a championship with the 2008 New York Giants, is in the third year of a six-year deal with the Washington Redskins.
Cornerback Jordan Mabin, wide receiver Jeremy Ebert and offensive lineman Al Netter, all members of Northwestern's 2011 senior class, are practice squad competitors for the Atlanta Falcons, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Tennessee Titans, respectively. Netter recently was acquired by the Titans after a 2012 NFL season spent with the Super Bowl-bound San Francisco 49ers. Finally, 2012 alum and defensive tackle Brian Arnfelt has found a home on the practice squad with Mike Tomlin's Pittsburgh Steelers.
The NFL season officially gets underway Thursday (Sept. 5) when the Baltimore Ravens square off with the Denver Broncos in the Mile High City.
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