by Zach Reger | Earlier this week, we published a piece about Utes in the NFL on defense. Today, let’s take a look at Utes in the NFL who will be playing offense and special teams this season.
Quarterback: Alex Smith (Utah: 2002-2004)
Potentially the best comeback story in NFL history is in the making right now with Alex Smith. After suffering a horrific leg injury in November of 2018 that almost took his life, many thought that he would not be able to walk again, let alone play football, but here we are. In early August, Smith was cleared by medical professionals for football activities. He has now been practicing, but Smith will not be handed the starting role. The Washington Football Team selected Dwayne Haskins with the 15th overall pick in last season’s draft, and Haskins had an up-and-down rookie year. Head Coach Ron Rivera said that Smith has looked good in practice and that he will have a shot at the starting role. No matter who gets the job, Smith will be a great leader for the team and a great mentor for Haskins.
Running Back: Zack Moss (Utah: 2016-2019)
The all-time leading rusher for the Utes was drafted #86 overall to the Buffalo Bills in this year’s NFL draft. This is the perfect fit for Moss as he is built to be a workhorse back in the NFL. He will have to compete with second year back Devin Singletary for carries, but Moss will get his fair share to start the season. With Frank Gore leaving town, Moss will instantly fit into the goal line and short yardage packages. But who knows? If Moss can get hot in the season, he could run away with the Buffalo backfield.
Wide Receiver: Tim Patrick (Utah: 2014-2016)
The Broncos beefed up at wide receiver this offseason, adding Jerry Jeudy and KJ Hamler in the first two rounds of the 2020 Draft. This will make it difficult for Patrick to get consistent playing time. Still, Patrick has been productive in his short time with the Broncos. He has played in 24 games in 2 seasons on their active roster. In those games, he has 39 receptions for 533 yards and 1 touchdown. Despite his new teammates in the wide receiver room, the Broncos offense is young and should be exciting. If Drew Lock steps up to the plate like he did down the stretch last season, Patrick should still be involved and have a role in the offense.
Offensive Tackle: Garett Bolles (Utah: 2016)
Bolles has been the starting left tackle for the Broncos ever since he was drafted in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He even played every offensive snap last season. In May of this year, the Broncos declined Bolles’s fifth-year option, making, his future in Denver a little uncertain. However, for this year, Bolles will see the field a ton and will be tasked with protecting the future of the franchise in Drew Lock.
Offensive Tackle: Sam Tevi (Utah: 2013-2016)
Tevi was drafted in the 6th round of the 2017 NFL Draft, but is now a two-year starter for the Los Angeles Chargers. He has started 29 games in the last two seasons and has often been on the field at right tackle. In this year’s training camp, he is battling for the starting left tackle position and seems to be the favorite for the job, but even if he loses, he will be a starter for an offense that has some talent with Austin Ekeler and Keenan Allen. All of this being an amazing feat for a former 6th round pick.
Kicker: Matt Gay (Utah: 2017-2018)
Matt Gay is entering his second season strong after a great rookie year. Gay was successful on 27 out of his 35 field goal attempts and hit 5 field goals over 50 yards. With Tom Brady coming to Tampa and the Bucs offense looking stacked, Matt Gay is in store for another stellar season.
Featured image via Block U.