Browsing: nfl

Air Force Academy defensive end Ben Garland watched the NFL Draft with a hope, but not an expectation to get a call from an NFL team. Names kept running across the bottom of the screen of ESPN’s draft coverage when Garland’s phone starting ringing. The Denver Broncos asked if he wanted to go to their mini-camp. Garland never expected to garner any NFL interest. Not until the Air Force Academy’s strength and conditioning coach approached him after the Falcons’ bowl game had anyone ever mentioned it. It’s not that Garland didn’t have the type of standout senior year that leads…

[HTML1] Marine Lt.  Denver Edick wanted to surprise his wife, who happens to be a Redskins cheerleader (Ooh-Rah Marine!), upon his return from a deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan at a Redskins cheerleading practice. So he called a local TV affiliate to catch the reunion on camera. Nice story, right? Most teams would love the free publicity of a Marine surprising his cheerleader wife. Well, the Redskins are not most teams. Full disclosure: I am a Redskins season ticket holder and remain a die-hard fan even though they seem to do everything in their power to push fans like myself…

The New York Jets pulled off the big upset of the NFL playoffs this past weekend by going on the road and beating the San Diego Chargers, 20-14. New York’s defense, which ranked number one in the NFL during the regular season, largely held the high-powered San Diego offense in check. It turns out that defense has a strong connection to the United States Military Academy. Two Jet defensive coaches were part of Army football in the 1990s — one as a coach and one as a star player. Bob Sutton, the Jets senior defensive assistant/linebackers, was the head coach…

The New Orleans Saints released fullback Kyle Eckel on Wednesday. The former Naval Academy star was signed by the team in October after an injury to starter Heath Evans. Eckel  played in five games and had a total of six yards rushing on two carries. He was the only service academy graduate on the roster of an NFL team this season. A 2005 graduate of the academy, Eckel was booted from the service in 2006 and began his NFL career. He had his best pro season in 2007 with the New England Patriots, carrying the ball 33 times and scoring…

No running back in the NFL has been more explosive this season than Tennessee’s Chris Johnson. He leads the NFL in rushing with 1,396 yards and is on pace for a 2,000 yard season and a shot at Eric Dickerson’s NFL record for rushing yards in a season. A former Marine is a one of the keys to Johnson’s success. Titans fullback Ahmard Hall, who served four years in the Corps, is quietly earning a reputation as one of the top blocking backs in the NFL, as ESPN’s Len Pasquarelli writes. Hall, like most fullbacks, rarely carries the ball and…

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