Order is being restored when it comes to Tennessee football players in the pros. The Vols’ production is starting to increase, and it took a huge leap forward this past week. Part of that was the biggest star from UT in the NFL, who has been getting better ever since his return from injury, having his best week of the season.
However, a rookie emerged with an elite performance, and another rookie made his NFL debut. Now, all five players who were drafted out of Rocky Top this past year has played at the next level. Once again, we had to name three stars of the week as well, including two defensive backs.
As usual, we’ll separate our performers by the stars of the week, those who saw significant action and those who saw limited action before closing with those who didn’t play. However, Tennessee football had some new developments in the NFL in general this past week, so let’s start there and look at the players who had a bye before diving in.
The best performance of the year by an established Tennessee football star headlines former Volunteers in the pros during Week 8 of 2022.
Alexander Johnson signed to Seattle Seahawks practice squad
After four years with the Denver Broncos, A.J. Johnson as he was known in college, was a free agent this past year. Johnson’s debut in 2018 came four years after his last game with the Vols, as he had to deal with an off-the-field legal issue that was drug out way too long. However, he was productive in Denver.
In his final three years there, Johnson had four and a half sacks, four forced fumbles, eight pass deflections, 11 tackles for a loss, an interception and 249 tackles, 143 of which were solo. Now, he is on the Seattle Seahawks’ practice squad, and given what he’s already done, he’ll likely work his way onto the field soon.
Darrell Taylor injured
Sticking with the Seahawks, Darrell Taylor, who had been emerging the past few weeks, had to leave the game early with a hip injury in their 27-13 win over the New York Giants. It was sad to see given the fact that he had a strip-sack each of the past two weeks. However, when he returns, Tennessee football could have two linebackers in Seattle.