We take an early look at expectations as they embark on NFL careers
Now that the 2021 NFL Draft weekend has finished how are the former Syracuse Orange going to fit with their new teams? Andre Cisco heads back to Florida to join the Jacksonville Jaguars where his impact will largely depend on his recovery from the ACL injury he suffered last Fall. According to Andy Staples at The Athletic this is the outlook for Andre right now
If Cisco is ready to play, that could squeeze out Jarrod Wilson, who is in the final season of a three-year deal. Wilson carries $583,000 in dead cap money, so the Jaguars could move on easily if necessary.
Ifeatu Melifonwu is headed to the Detroit Lions who drafted Jeff Okudah in the first round last year and added Corn Elder and Quinton Dunbar as free agents. There is already some talk out of Detroit that Melifonwu might be considered as help for the Lions need at safety.
Melifonwu might be part of the solution. He said after his pro day that some teams had talked to him about playing a corner/safety role, and Holmes left the door open for Campbell to give that a shot. Physically, he cuts a similar figure to Dunbar, but his lack of elite speed could make the hybrid option a decent one.
Both Trill Williams and Nolan Cooney signed un-drafted free agent deals with the New Orleans Saints. Williams will look to make his mark as a player who can help the Saints on defense and special teams. He was one of four defensive backs that New Orleans signed and he’ll face a lot of competition trying to secure his spot on the roster.
Cooney will compete with 2nd-year punter Blake Gillikin in a battle to replace last year’s punter Thomas Morstead. Gillikin spent last season in New Orleans but Cooney was scouted by the Saints special teams coach and brought in to compete for the job. Of the four Syracuse alums Cooney could wind up being the one who ends up starting next Fall.
We’ll certainly keep an eye on these and other Syracuse alums competing to secure roster spots over this summer.