Just as the Syracuse Orange are finalizing the 2021 football depth chart, former Syracuse players are also learning their respective fates in the NFL. After years of what felt like declining levels of Orange football players at the pro level, it finally appears like those numbers are ticking back up.
So below is a quick list of the Syracuse players that you’ll likely be seeing on the field this year as NFL teams have trimmed rosters to 53 teams less than two weeks before the 2021 regular season gets started.
- Made roster: DE Chandler Jones, OT Justin Pugh
- Cut: OT Koda Martin
The Cards have quietly become “Syracuse West” as Arizona had three Orange players on the roster in preseason and seems to be down to two with Koda Martin potentially cut. Chandler Jones requested a trade back in July, but TBD if that winds up resulting in the elite pass-rusher actually heading elsewhere.
- Cut: P Sterling Hofrichter, DT Chris Slayton
Unfortunately, Syracuse was 0-for-2 on the Falcons. Hof was cut over the weekend, in an affront to Punter U. Slayton was cut on Tuesday morning. Hopefully Hof can catch on somewhere, since punting is always a need and teams will look to fill that role with the cheapest option possible.
- Waived/injured: OT Cody Conway
Conway’s season ended via ACL injury about a month ago, unfortunately.
- Made roster: CB Ifeatu Melifonwu
After being selected in the third round this spring, Iffy made the roster for the Lions and will be in the mix at corner. It’s a pretty young group for the Lions, so there’s a chance for him to establish himself in Detroit for the long-term.
- Made roster: LB Zaire Franklin
No surprise that a Colts captain made the roster. Franklin’s a special teams captain, but is now getting greater opportunities on the defensive side as well. This sort of rise is what we’ve to expect from Zaire, who’s continually overcame long odds to make a huge impact.
Highest-graded rookie safeties in the preseason:— PFF College (@PFF_College) August 30, 2021
Andre Cisco - 81.1
Jamar Johnson - 78.8 pic.twitter.com/YaMCDz2qcD
- Made roster: S Andre Cisco
As you can see above, Cisco’s made his presence known already at the NFL level, and like Iffy, he’ll have a chance to be a big part of a young defense early on here. He’s in the mix to start already, so hopefully Jags fans have their Sisqo gifs ready to go for week one.
- Cut: WR Trishton Jackson
Jackson made the cut last year to the shock of some Rams observers, but wasn’t so lucky this time around. The odd part in 2021, perhaps, was that injured rookie receiver Ben Skowronek basically made the roster instead.
- Made roster: DB Trill Williams
After being claimed off waivers from the Saints, it seemed like it would be an uphill battle for Trill in Miami given the number of DBs on the roster. And yet, despite the Phins’ having 12 on the team, he winds up being one of them. Should’ve known when he was included in last week’s Spider-Man video...
- Cut: P Nolan Cooney
Cooney’s time with the Saints ended last week, but there’s still a chance he can catch on somewhere. Though one would think Hof probably takes priority as the more experienced option if teams are in search of a punter.
- Made roster: P Riley Dixon
Punter U gets to keep one at least. Dixon returns to the Giants and won’t have a backup on the team. So it’s his job as long as he performs well enough to avoid a midseason free agent replacement (or injury).
- Made roster: DE Alton Robinson
Robinson’s put on a solid show this preseason and Seahawks observers all seem pretty sold on him being a part of the long-term solution for Seattle’s pass-rush. Expect to see a lot of him this year after looking good in spurts as a rookie.
Congrats to all of the SU players that made roster cuts, and hopefully those that didn’t are able to catch on elsewhere and/or as practice squad additions.