NFL teams announced their final roster decisions over the weekend with the start of the season almost here. The cuts didn’t bode very well for former Terps.
Seven Maryland football players aiming to make the pros for the first time were cut, and two others were released as well. Just one undrafted Terp was able to squeeze his way onto a roster — linebacker Josh Woods.
Woods spent last season on the Chicago Bears practice squad after going undrafted in 2017. He played defensive back at Maryland and made the switch to linebacker after college. In January, he was signed to a reserve/full contract with the Bears.
Throughout preseason, Woods continued to prove why he deserved to be on the 53-man roster. In four games, two of which he started, the Baltimore native had 23 combined tackles and a fumble recovery. While it’ll be hard for him to push for playing time on a talent-heavy Chicago defense, he’s finally on the active roster.
Other players impressed in the preseason, but it wasn’t enough to earn them coveted roster spots. All of the 2019 undrafted free agent class didn’t make their squads, including linebacker Tre Watson (Miami Dolphins), offensive lineman Damian Prince (Pittsburgh Steelers) and linebacker Jesse Aniebonam (Houston Texans). Seventh round draft pick Derwin Gray didn’t make the Steelers either, but the offensive lineman earned a spot on the practice squad.
Aniebonam had just had a big interception and three tackles against the Los Angeles Rams. Watson just put up a 10 tackle performance against the New Orleans Saints, who are now giving him a tryout.
Saints are welcoming out UDFA LBs Tre Watson and Tre Crawford for tryouts. Watson is a Maryland graduate that spent the preseason with Miami. Crawford came out of UAB and spent time in Atlanta. Watson was effective in coverage, Crawford a pass rusher with 9 sacks in 2018.— AllSaintsConsidered.com (@AllSaintsBlog) September 2, 2019
Three other players trying to make NFL teams for the first time were cut: defensive tackle Cavon Walker (Kansas City Chiefs), safety A.J. Hendy (Texans) and offensive lineman Michael Dunn (Dolphins). Running back Trey Edmunds, who made the Saints in 2017 but wasn’t on a roster last season, couldn’t make his way onto the Steelers 53-man list this time around and will be on the practice squad.
One of the more surprising moves was the Carolina Panthers’ dismissal of two-time Super Bowl champion wide receiver Torrey Smith, who was one half of the Terp receiver duo in Charlotte last season alongside DJ Moore.
I’m going to miss my guys! Not what I expected but I understand the buisness. Thank you for sticking with me through the injury and allowing me to work myself back to full strength. 3 months ago I thought my career was done! (Shoutout to Nabes and Kev) Thank you @panthers ! pic.twitter.com/DEoPgQG5AD— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) September 1, 2019
Smith was rehabbing from a knee injury and only played in 11 games last season, ending the year with 17 catches for 190 yards and two touchdowns — the lowest marks of his career. In his eight years in the league, he’s totaled 319 receptions, 5,141 yards and 41 touchdowns. Smith is only 30 years old, so don’t be surprised to see his name circulating around the league this season.
Here are the Terps you can expect to see in Week 1 action of the NFL.
Terps in the NFL: 2019
|Jermaine Carter Jr.||LB||Panthers||2nd|