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Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the NFC North

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Let’s find some diamonds in the rough

NFL: AUG 01 Bears Training Camp Photo by Joseph Weiser/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This series will involve scouting - electronically - the 90 man rosters of the other 31 teams in the league for players who might get left behind at final cut downs, who could potentially provide value as the 52nd or 53rd man on the Redskins’ roster.

This edition takes a look at the NFC North, home of the Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, and Minnesota Vikings.


Read other articles from this series:

Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the AFC East

Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the AFC South

Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the AFC North

Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the AFC West

Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the NFC East

Poaching players from NFL roster cut downs: the NFC South


Chicago Bears

Ian Bunting (TE) - Bunting, a UDFA out of Cal, has been battling with several others, including Dax Raymond (below) for the TE4 spot on the Bears. Bunting was known in college for his blocking ability, but was able to notch 77 receiving yards in the Bears’ first pre-season match.

Dax Raymond (TE) - This UDFA from Utah State was originally discussed in some circles as Day 2 draft material. His receiving skills are most notable with his blocking still very much a work in progress. It’s very unlikely both Bunting and Raymond make the Bears 53-man roster. Either could be worth a look for TE depth, particularly if Jordan Reed is out for a prolonged absence.

Kylie Fitts (OLB) - Fitts was a 6th round draft pick out of Utah in 2018, taken as a developmental prospect. He has not played particularly well during pre-season games and is potentially at risk of not making the roster. Nevertheless, according to some, he still has some promise.

Detroit Lions

Isaac Nauta (TE) - Drafted in the 7th round from Georgia, Nauta is behind quite a bit of TE depth - including first rounder TJ Hockenson - on the Lions’ roster. Nauta was one of the more complete TEs to slip as late in the draft as he did, known both for steady hands and an ability to block.

Beau Benzschawel (G) - A UDFA from Wisconsin, it was a bit of a surprise that Benzschawel wasn’t taken earlier in the draft. The Lions don’t have great OL depth, so he may stick on their roster, but if he doesn’t, this cerebral pass blocker is the kind of guy who could blossom with a year or two of strength training under Bill Callahan.

Mitchell Loewen (DL) - Picked up by the Saints as a UDFA in 2016, the lineman has apparently looked pretty strong against the Lions’ OL in practice, manhandling them repeatedly.

Ryan Pope (OL) - A UDFA out of San Diego State, profiled here before the draft, Pope could potentially be a swing tackle project, if we need another one of those.

Green Bay Packers

Trevor Davis (WR) - Davis was taken in the 5th round of the 2016 draft by the Packers. He’s right at the edge of the Packers’ WR depth chart, but has shown promise both as a receiver and special teamer this pre-season.

Allen Lazard (WR) - Picked up by the Jaguars as a UDFA out of Iowa State in 2018, Lazard, like Davis (above), is making a name for himself at the edge of the Packers’ WR group. Injured in the third pre-season game, against the Raiders, he could fall off the 53-man roster.

Curtis Bolton (LB) - Also injured in the Packers’ pre-season game against the Raiders, this UDFA from Oklahoma has shown promise both in coverage and on special teams. He seems to be cut from a similar cloth as Gary Johnson.

Minnesota Vikings

Khari Blasingame (FB) - Another fullback! This UDFA from Vanderbilt is a very impressive athlete, garnering the second highest SPARQ score (paging James Dorsett) for a running back in the 2019 crop.

Oli Udoh (OL) - A 6th rounder from Elon, Udoh was profiled here by Dale Beck prior to the draft. Udoh didn’t play OL until his senior year of high school, but apparently he’s been very coachable and looks to have what it could take to develop into a starting NFL tackle. If the Vikings happen to try to squirrel him away on the PS, we should seriously consider grabbing him.

Jake Browning (QB) - By most accounts, Browning, a UDFA from Washington, is the QB4 on the Vikings’ roster. If the Redskins were to grab him, it would likely only be as a PS addition.

Next up: NFC West

Poll

Are there any players on this list that you think the Redskins should keep an eye on?

This poll is closed

  • 5%
    Ian Bunting (TE)
    (27 votes)
  • 4%
    Dax Raymond (TE)
    (24 votes)
  • 1%
    Kylie Fitts (OLB)
    (5 votes)
  • 14%
    Isaac Nauta (TE)
    (70 votes)
  • 21%
    Beau Benzschawel (G)
    (105 votes)
  • 1%
    Mitchell Loewen (DL)
    (6 votes)
  • 3%
    Ryan Pope (OL)
    (16 votes)
  • 4%
    Trevor Davis (WR)
    (20 votes)
  • 1%
    Allen Lazard (WR)
    (9 votes)
  • 0%
    Curtis Bolton (LB)
    (0 votes)
  • 2%
    Khari Blasingame (FB)
    (14 votes)
  • 23%
    Oli Udoh (OL)
    (114 votes)
  • 4%
    Jake Browning (QB)
    (24 votes)
  • 12%
    None of the above.
    (61 votes)
495 votes total Vote Now