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ProCanes 2021 Playoffs Recap and Future ProCanes Next Steps

As the NFL Season Has Ended, Recapping ProCanes Playoff Stats, Greg Olsen’s Retirement, NFL Hall of Fame, and Future ProCanes’ Draft Process

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

We have made it to the first Sunday with no regulation football for the first time in roughly 24 weeks and now have to wait another half year until we see NCAA and NFL action again... sigh. With that being said, the offseason never sleeps in what is hopefully a more normal season as early enrollees have started to arrive on campus, spring and summer schedules are being solidified, and the draft process commences for a small cohort of future ProCanes.

Prior to the proverbial changing of the guard as the 2020 Canes become ProCanes this April, let’s get to the last month of ProCanes action in the playoffs. Of note, twenty ProCanes entered the NFL Postseason but many were inactive or ineffective, and zero played in the Super Bowl. As you can see from the below stats, the ProCanes playoff impact was pretty nonexistent:

OL | Jon Feliciano | Buffalo Bills (three games): 187 Offensive Snaps (100%)
S | Jaquan Johnson | Buffalo Bills (three games): 50 ST Snaps
DE | Calais Campbell | Baltimore Ravens (two games): 4 tackles, 1 QBHit, 1 PD
RB | Gus Edwards (transferred to Rutgers) | Baltimore Ravens (two games): 18 rushes, 80 yards
TE | David Njoku | Cleveland Browns (two games): 5 receptions for 66 yards
S | Sheldrick Redwine | Cleveland Browns (two games): 3 tackles, 1 INT
DE | Joe Jackson | Cleveland Browns (two games): Inactive
DE | Olivier Vernon | Cleveland Browns (two games): Inactive
DE | Jonathan Garvin | Green Bay Packers (two games): Inactive
TE | Jimmy Graham | Chicago Bears (one game): 2 catches, 25 yards, 1 TD
FS | Deon Bush | Chicago Bears (one game): 17 Defensive Snaps
P | Pat O’Donnell | Chicago Bears (one game): 7 punts, 40.1 Yards/Punt, 49 Long, 2 inside 20
CB | Artie Burns | Chicago Bears (one game): Injured Reserve
DE | Al-Quadin Muhammad | Indianapolis Colts (one game): 1 TFL, 1 QBHit
RB | Lamar Miller | Washington Football Team (one game): No Plays
RB | Travis Homer | Seattle Seahawks (one game): Inactive
TE | Greg Olsen | Seattle Seahawks (one game): Inactive
RB | DeeJay Dallas | Seattle Seahawks (one game): Inactive
WR | Phillip Dorsett | Seattle Seahawks (one game): Inactive
OL | Danny Isidora | Pittsburgh Steelers (one game): No Plays

Even though the ProCanes did not pop off the stats sheets or anchor a Super Bowl run, the news was active pertaining to some veterans. First, the 2021 Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place last Saturday and the lone ProCane candidate, Reggie Wayne, failed to be included in his second year of eligibility. In a class including wide receiver competition in Calvin Johnson, the odds were against Wayne as he hoped to be included alongside his right hand man, Peyton Manning, who was an obvious inductee. Wayne should continue to be on the ballot with another top tier wide receiver, Torry Holt. Both should eventually get in, which will hopefully happen sooner than later.

While this year’s class lacked ProCane entry, next year’s class should feature a slate including Wayne, as well as players eligible for their first-time. Andre Johnson, Devin Hester, and Vince Wilfork all will have a shot at Canton in 2022. See more about the 2022 Hall of Fame class headlined by ProCanes which StateoftheU contributor, Craig T. Smith, discussed last week.

There should be another ProCane eligible in five years as a player that embodies why the Miami is TEU has officially announced his retirement. Tight End, Greg Olsen, will be heading to a broadcast booth near you (aka Fox) as he announces his retirement after an illustrious 14-year career with the Bears, Panthers, and Seahawks. The announcement comes on the heels of a career that started to get derailed by injuries, including a ruptured achilles tendon. As he continues to heal his achilles, the legend of three-leg Greg rides off in the NFL distance.

As one ProCane departs, a handful of ProCane hopefuls have begun their draft process. At the end of January, Quincy Roche and Jose Borregales impressed during the Senior Bowl week. And with no official NFL combine this year, it will be interesting to monitor how Roche, Borregales, and the remaining trio of Greg Rousseau, Brevin Jordan, and Jaelan Phillips navigate the NFL Draft process in lieu of the traditional events.

Most likely, they will arrange pro day workouts, including the one set in Miami for March 29. Phillips and Rousseau are realistically shooting for first round grades, while Jordan will want to solidify his top-three TE grade behind Florida’s Kyle Pitts and around Penn State’s Pat Freiermuth. He also has big shoes to fill in the #TEU lineage. Roche helped improve his stock at the Senior Bowl and is aiming to maintain a grade within the first three rounds. Borregales is the number one kicker in the 2021 class and should have an opportunity make an early impact wherever he ends up.