Huskies in the NFL: Season recap

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jordan Todman, left, pushes off Denver Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller during the first half in an NFL football divisional playoff game, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

While Conference Championships are on tap, the season is over for any and all former UConn players in the NFL. Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jordan Todman, Kansas City Chiefs fullback Anthony Sherman and corner back Tyvon Branch were all in action this past weekend but neither team was able to advance. It was somewhat of a whirlwind season for Todman, as he went from third string to on top of the depth chart for the Steelers’ two playoff games due to injuries to Le’Veon Bell and DeAngelo Williams. He finished the regular season with a meager four carries for 22 yards, but he had 16 carries for 71 yards in the playoffs. Sherman carried the ball once in the season and had four receptions for five yards. Branch finished with 35 tackles and one interception.

Elsewhere on offense, San Diego Chargers running back Donald Brown came on a little bit by the end of the year.  He wrapped up the season, in which he got released, with 59 carries for 229 yards and a touchdown. Houston Texans tight end Ryan Griffin also had a strong finish to his season with 20 receptions for 251 yards and two touchdowns as the Texans claimed the AFC South title. Rookie wide out Geremy Davis of the New York Giants had two catches for 21 yards in a minimal role in the Giants offense. In Atlanta, Falcons wide receiver Nick Williams came on strong at the end of the season. He finished the year with 17 catches for 159 yards and two touchdowns.

Buffalo Bills special teams ace and wide receiver Marcus Easley had one reception for a 58 yard touchdown and 10 tackles. The only UConn quarterback in the NFL, Dan Orlovsky, saw some abbreviated action this year as Matthew Stafford’s back up on the Detroit Lions, concluding the season by going 22 of 40 for 201 yards and a touchdown.

On the defensive side of the ball, Dallas Cowboys rookie Byron Jones made a large impact and had several starts in the defensive backfield for America’s team. Jones finished with 66 tackles as well as eight pass deflections. Fellow defensive back Dwayne Gratz of the Jacksonville Jaguars had a more modest season with 27 tackles and one pass deflection.

Tennessee Titans corner back Blidi Wreh-Wilson wrapped up the year with only 20 tackles. The third of three Husky corner backs in the AFC South, Darius Butler of the Indianapolis Colts had the gaudiest numbers with 50 tackles and an interception.

Linebacker Sio Moore finished with 13 tackles, two for a loss, for the Colts defense as well. Linebacker Danny Lansanah had a strong season for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with 55 tackles, four pass deflections and two forced fumbles. San Diego Chargers linebacker Kendall Reyes had 32 tackles to go along with three tackles for a loss; four pass deflections and an interception.


Matt Baresi is a campus correspondent. He can be reached via email at matthew.baresi@uconn.edu