Jayhawks in the Pros #14

Nov. 19, 2012

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Through 11 weeks of the National Football League season, six Jayhawks remain active on NFL rosters with several of them making an impact for their teams. In addition, two Jayhawks are playing in the Canadian Football League. This week’s edition of Jayhawks in the Pros is highlighted by Jon Cornish leading his team to the Grey Cup Championship game, while cornerback Aqib Talib made a big impression with his new team.

Dezmon Briscoe
Wide receiver Dezmon Briscoe is in his third season in the NFL and first with the Washington Redskins. Briscoe was inactive for Washington’s 31-6 win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. He has played in six games this season for Washington, making two catches for 22 yards. He signed with the Redskins after being released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in late July. In his two-plus NFL seasons, Briscoe has played in 20 games and tallied 42 catches for 488 yards and seven touchdowns. He was originally drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft.

Anthony Collins
Offensive tackle Anthony Collins is in his fifth season in the NFL with the Cincinnati Bengals. Collins was active, but did not play, in the Bengals’ 28-6 win over the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium Sunday. Collins has not played in any of the Bengals’ games this season, missing the first one with an injury and has dressed, but not seen action, in the last nine. He has played in 39 games in his NFL career and made 18 starts at offensive tackle. Collins was originally a fourth-round selection by Cincinnati in the 2008 NFL Draft.

Chris Harris
Cornerback Chris Harris is in his second season with the Denver Broncos.Harris made his sixth start of the season in the Broncos’ 30-23 win over the San Diego Chargers Sunday at Mile High Stadium. The second-year cornerback made three tackles and collected two pass breakups in the game. Harris has played in 25 games in his NFL career, making 10 starts. He has recorded 113 tackles, broken up 12 passes, recorded 2.5 sacks and made three interceptions. He signed with the Broncos as an undrafted free agent following the 2011 NFL Draft.

Steven Johnson
Linebacker Steven Johnson is in his first season with the Denver Broncos after making the team as an undrafted free agent. Johnson played in Denver’s 30-23 win over San Diego Sunday, but did not record any stats. He has played in five of Denver’s 10 games this season, making a special teams tackle against Cincinnati in Week Eight. Johnson was signed by the Broncos as an undrafted free agent following the 2012 NFL Draft in April.

Darrell Stuckey
Safety Darrell Stuckey is in his third season with San Diego, and first serving as the Chargers’ special teams captain. Stuckey played in his 10th game of the season, a 30-23 loss to the Denver Broncos Sunday. The third-year safety made a solo tackle on special teams, giving him nine on the season. Along with his nine tackles, Stuckey has a forced fumble and has recovered two fumbles. In his career, Stuckey has played in 25 games and made 22 tackles. He was drafted by the Chargers in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL Draft.

Fans can vote Stuckey onto the AFC’s Pro Bowl team using online voting here.

Aqib Talib
Cornerback Aqib Talib is in his fifth season in the NFL and his first with the New England Patriots after being traded by the Tampa Buccaneers in Week Eight. Talib intercepted his first pass in a Patriots’ uniform and returned it 59 yards for a touchdown Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts. In his first game with New England, Talib was extremely active in the secondary, making seven tackles and adding a pass breakup to his interception. He has played in five games this season (four with Tampa Bay, one with New England) and has recorded 28 tackles with eight pass breakups and two interceptions. In his career, the former KU All-American has made 189 tackles, recorded 54 pass breakups and collected 19 interceptions, including four he has returned for touchdowns. He was a first-round pick by Tampa Bay in the 2008 NFL Draft.

Talib’s Interception Return

Jayhawks in the Canadian Football League

Jon Cornish
Tailback Jon Cornish is headed to the CFL’s 100th Grey Cup. The sixth-year back rushed for 112 yards on 18 carries and added 42 yards receiving on a pair of catches to lead his Calgary Stampeders to a 34-29 win over the defending Grey Cup Champion BC Lions in the CFL Western Conference Finals Sunday. Cornish leads Calgary into its first trip to the Grey Cup since 2008, where the Stampeders will face the Toronto Argonauts Sunday, Nov. 25 at 5 p.m. (CT), which can be seen across the United States on the NBC Sports Network.

Cornish has had a dream season thus far. The former Jayhawk led the league in rushing during the regular season with 1,457 yards, which broke a 56-year old record for most rushing yards in the CFL by a Canadian native. He has scored 11 rushing touchdowns and also caught 39 passes for 356 yards and two receiving touchdowns. In his six-year career in the league, Cornish has rushed for 3,327 yards and 23 touchdowns to go along with 88 grabs for 1,051 yards and six scores through the air.

He has also been named CFL Canadian Player of the Week eight times during the season and is up for the league’s Most Outstanding Player award this year.

Marcus Henry
Wide receiver Marcus Henry has completed his second year in the CFL with the Edmonton Eskimos. Henry and the Eskimos were eliminated from the CFL playoffs in the second round on Nov. 11, falling to the Toronto Argonauts, 42-26. In the playoff loss, Henry collected two receptions for 24 yards. In eight regular-season games, the former Jayhawk recorded 28 catches for 382 yards and one touchdown. In his CFL career, Henry has 61 receptions for 793 yards and two scores. He signed with Edmonton during the 2011 NFL season after being released by the Carolina Panthers in training camp.

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Cover photo courtesy of David Butler II-US PRESSWIRE.