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Question: best ex-Practice squader?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by bokonon, Sep 3, 2007.

  1. bokonon

    bokonon Rookie

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    I asked this question in the Childress thread and it went unanswered. Who is the best NFL player to have come off of a practice squad? I'm genuinely curious to see what the historical ceiling is for PS players in general, outside of the context that I at one time had high hopes for Mills.

    The best I can come up with from the top of my head is Stephen Neal. Can anybody top that?
  2. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #50 Jersey

    I am sure that there are others around the league. Tom Ashworth and Brandon Gorin from the Pats.... Not sure abot other teams... Best teams to check are the Titans, Colts and Chiefs.
  3. upstater1

    upstater1 Rookie

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    Mike Wright?

    Was Randall Gay ever on the PS?
  4. bokonon

    bokonon Rookie

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    I think I remember Gay going straight to the 53. Wright may be as good a player as Neal without the same opportunity to prove himself (so far).

    And DaBruinz, I don't think either Gorin or Ashworth are/were better than Neal. Especially Gorin.
  5. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #50 Jersey

    Wright was never on the Practice squad. As for whether Ashworth/Gorin are/were better than Neal. *shrug* Neal is mediocre in my opinion... I hope that the new scheme will help him out.
  6. NEPatriot

    NEPatriot Banned

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    He went straight from UDFA to the 53 man roster.
  7. ClevTrev

    ClevTrev Rookie

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    Correct. Neal was never on the Pats PS. He was signed from the Eagles' PS.
  8. bokonon

    bokonon Rookie

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    My question isn't limited to the Pats PS.

    BTW, just read Keenan McCardell was on the Bears PS in the early 90s. That's probably going to be the top guy in terms of historical precedent, I'd guess. Heard him discussed as a borderline HOFer. So I guess there is a pretty high ceiling after all.
  9. patsox23

    patsox23 Rookie

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    WOW. I've never heard that opinion. I'm open to it, 'though dubious. Care to elaborate? I think Neal is very solid.
  10. cstjohn17

    cstjohn17 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #54 Jersey

    This whole thread points out the minimal impact of practice squad players.

    I am no different than anyone else I hold out hope against hope that they can find a gem and work him into the system but in the end they are usually just a bunch of easily replacable parts that have little or no impact.
  11. Oswlek

    Oswlek Rookie

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    I am about 99.9% sure that Neal was on the PS in 2001.
  12. Lloyd_Christmas

    Lloyd_Christmas I can delete my own crap! PatsFans.com Supporter

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    0.1% proof:

    Career Transactions
    Stephen Neal was originally signed by the Patriots as a free agent (7/23/01) ... Waived by the Patriots (8/26/01) ... Signed to the Philadelphia Eagles practice squad (9/04/01) ... Signed by the Patriots (12/12/01) from the Eagles practice squad ... Placed on injured reserve (10/23/02) ... Placed on reserve/physically unable to perform list (8/26/03) ... Placed on injured reserve (11/10/03).

    http://www.patriots.com/team/index.cfm?ac=playerbio&bio=12370
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2007
  13. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #50 Jersey

    Mediocre = average = solid.

    When you look at how the RBs fare running to his side, they don't get to 4 YPC.

    I have to say that Neal is doing better in his Pass Blocking, but I still say he's about average for a RG.
  14. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #50 Jersey

    Actually, considering that the Pats have developed Gorin, Hocstein, Yates, and Ashworth through the practice squad, I'm not sure you can say that they have a minimal impact. Without Ashworth and Hochstein, we don't win SB38. Without Gorin, we don't win SB 39.

    Now, please don't mis-read what I just said. I am not saying that they are THE reason we won. However, without them on the team, we don't win because they stepped in and helped this team when we had the injuries on the O-line.
  15. MetalBleachers

    MetalBleachers Rookie

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    The PS question reminds me of NFL Europe: Adam V., Kurt Warner, not a heck of a lot else. The exception proves the rule in that very few PSers end up making a big impact.

    Maybe more in NE due to development of OL and LB positions?

    edit: I think DaBruinz just beat me to it.
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2007
  16. psychoPat

    psychoPat Role Player PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Yes, it's an eye-opener.

    DaBruinz points out that the main benefit of the p/s (besides scout team)
    is DEPTH.

    So it can matter ... but not much.
  17. Patriotic

    Patriotic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    As a former member of the Practice Squad at PatsFans, I plan on moving up the depth charts on the roster all the way to the Pro Bowl. When's the flight to Honolulu leaving?
  18. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    When you "arrive" neighbor! :rocker: Hurry, they start watering the booze if the plane sits too long. :eek:
  19. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The patriots have used the Practice Squad to develop OL's. Dante has run his university for linemen for years. As has been pointed out Hochstein, Gorin, Yates and Ashworth are all graduates. Neal was picked up from another team's Practice Squad.

    Certainly, these players have been very important to the success of the patriots. However, the point is that the Dante's OL Academy is the exception that proves the rule. The rest of the use of our practice squad has been very consistent over many years. The Practice Squad has provide players to be used in the daily PRACTICES. Occasionally a player is brought up to fill the roster in case of injuries, or to bolster the special teams, but other practice squads or the home couch of unwanted players is equally likely to provide such a player.

    just my 2 cents!
  20. PatsSteve1

    PatsSteve1 Rookie

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    He's also had revolving door ORT's. One thing I think Neal is really good at is blocking in space like on screen type plays and pulling out. He rarely misses and sometimes has blocked 2 guys at once.

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