State to Sundays update: Johnathan Abram shines for the Raiders in Week 1

Joel Coleman

(The text of the following article is courtesy of Mississippi State media relations)

It had been 369 days since Johnathan Abram played a football game. After playing just one quarter in 2019 before being injured, the former Mississippi State safety announced his presence in the first game of the 2020 campaign.

Abram gave the Raiders a glimpse of what was to come in his limited action a year ago, picking up five tackles against Denver. On Sunday, the 2019 first-round draft pick exploded for 13 total tackles in a 34-30 victory at Carolina. Nine of his tackles were of the solo variety, and his 13 tackles rank fourth in the NFL.

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(Johnathan Abram photo by Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports)

Around the league, former Bulldogs were disruptive on the defensive line. Fellow first-rounder Jeffery Simmons recovered a fumble in Monday night action that would lead to a game-tying touchdown for Tennessee on the ensuing drive. The Titans went on to win 16-14.

Denico Autry was the second-highest-graded defender for the Indianapolis Colts, picking up an NFL-leading two sacks for a combined loss of nine yards. 

Montez Sweat registered a 12-yard sack along with four additional pressures in the pass rush to help the Washington Football Team to a 27-17 victory. 

Fresh off winning a Super Bowl with the Kansas City Chiefs, Chris Jones posted a 78.9 pass rush grade that ranked 20 in the NFL in Week 1. 

On the offensive side of the ball, Elgton Jenkins continued to prove that he is one of the best pass protectors in the game. Jenkins did not allow a single pressure while playing every offensive snap for Green Bay. His 87.2 pass blocking grade ranked fifth in the NFL in Week 1. Las Vegas’ Gabe Jackson allowed just one pressure while playing every snap.

A pair of Bulldog rookies made their NFL debuts. On Thursday night, Willie Gay Jr. played 16 snaps on special teams and was Kansas City’s fifth-highest-graded special teams player. Cameron Dantzler started at cornerback for the Minnesota Vikings and made four solo tackles.

Here's a look at the numbers for all former Bulldogs that are a part of NFL franchises:

JOHNATHAN ABRAM | LAS VEGAS RAIDERS – S | AT MSU: 2017-18
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 9 TKL, 4 AST, 13 TT, 1.0 TFL
Last Week: 1 GS, 9 TKL, 4 AST, 13 TT, 1 TFL at Carolina Panthers (W, 34-30)

  • Recorded a game-high and career-high 13 total tackles, ignited by nine solo stops
  • Total tackles ranked fourth in the NFL in Week 1
  • Registered four stops according to PFF, which are tackles that constitute a failure for the offense

DENICO AUTRY | INDIANAPOLIS COLTS – DT/DE | AT MSU: 2012-13
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 2 TT, 2 SK, 2.0 TFL, 2 QBH
Last Week: 1 GS, 2 TKL, 2 TT, 2 SK, 2 TFL, 2 QBH at Jacksonville Jaguars (L, 20-27)

  • Recorded a game-high two sacks for a total loss of nine yards
  • Was the Colts’ second-highest graded defender in Week 1, with a 71.8 mark from PFF

HUNTER BRADLEY | GREEN BAY PACKERS – LS | AT MSU: 2012-17
Season: 1 G
Last Week: 1 G at Minnesota Vikings (W, 43-34)

FRED BROWN (PS) | DENVER BRONCOS – WR | AT MSU 2010-15
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP vs. Tennessee Titans (L, 14-16)

DEION CALHOUN | CINCINNATI BENGALS – OG | AT MSU: 2014-18
Season: 0 G, 0 GS
Last Week: DNP vs. Los Angeles Chargers (L, 13-16)

TOMMY CHAMPION (PS) | SEATTLE SEAHAWKS – OT | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP at Atlanta Falcons (W, 38-25)

BRIAN COLE II (PS) | MIAMI DOLPHINS – S | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP at New England Patriots (L, 11-21)

LOGAN COOKE | JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS – P | AT MSU: 2014-17
Season: 1 G, 3 Punts, 136 Yds, 45.3 AVG, LONG 53, 1 In-20
Last Week: 1 G, 3 Punts, 136 Yds, 1 In-20 vs. Indianapolis Colts (W, 27-20)

FLETCHER COX | PHILADELPHIA EAGLES – DT | AT MSU: 2009-11
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 2 TKL, 2 TT
Last Week: 1 GS, 2 TKL, 2 TT at Washington Football Team (L, 17-27)

  • Played a team-high 57 snaps on the defensive line

CAMERON DANTZLER | MINNESOTA VIKINGS – CB | AT MSU: 2016-19
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 4 TKL, 4 TT
Last Week: 1 GS, 4 TKL, 4 TT at Green Bay Packers (L, 34-43)

  • Started and played 64 of 78 defensive snaps for Minnesota in his NFL debut
  • Made four solo tackles

WILLIE GAY JR. | KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – LB | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: 1 G, 1 TKL, 1 TT
Last Week: 1G, 1 TKL, 1 TT vs. Houston Texans (W, 34-20)

  • Made one tackle, in his NFL debut against the Texans
  • Was Kansas City’s fifth-ranked special teams player, playing on the kickoff and punt coverage and return teams

J.T. GRAY | NEW ORLEANS SAINTS – DB | AT MSU: 2014-17
Season: 1 G
Last Week: 1 G, vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (W, 34-23)

  • Played 23 snaps on special teams

FARROD GREEN (PS) | INDIANAPOLIS COLTS – TE | AT MSU: 2015-19
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP at Jacksonville Jaguars (L, 20-27)

GERRI GREEN (PS) | INDIANAPOLIS COLTS – LB | AT MSU: 2014-18
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP at Jacksonville Jaguars (L, 20-27)

STEPHEN GUIDRY (IR) | DALLAS COWBOYS – WR | AT MSU: 2018-19
Season: Opted Out
Last Week: DNP at Los Angeles Rams (L, 17-20)

BRAXTON HOYETT (PS) | KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – DT | AT MSU: 2014-18
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP vs. Houston Texans (W, 34-20)

GABE JACKSON | LAS VEGAS RAIDERS – OG | AT MSU 2009-13
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 1 Pressure Allowed
Last Week: 1 GS, 1 Pressure Allowed at Carolina Panthers (W, 34-30)

  • Allowed just one pressure while playing all 63 snaps

ELGTON JENKINS | GREEN BAY PACKERS – OG | AT MSU: 2014-18
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 87.0 Pass Block Grade, 0 Pressures Allowed
Last Week: 1 GS, 87.0 Pass Block Grade, 0 Pressures Allowed at Minnesota Vikings (W, 43-34)

  • The second-highest-graded pass blocker (87.2) in the game and fifth in the NFL in Week 1, according to PFF
  • Did not allow a single pressure while playing all 78 snaps and pass blocking on 45 of them

CHRIS JONES | KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – DT | AT MSU: 2013-15
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 3 TKL, 1 AST, 4 TT, 1.5 SK, 2 QBH
Last Week: 1 GS, 3 TKL, 1 AST, 4 TT, 1.5 SK, 2 QBH vs. Houston Texans (W, 34-20)

  • Ranked No. 20 in the NFL in pass rush grade (78.9) in Week 1 according to PFF

JAQUARIUS LANDREWS (IR) | NEW YORK GIANTS – S | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: Injured Reserve
Last Week: DNP vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (L, 16-26)

BENARDRICK MCKINNEY | HOUSTON TEXANS – LB | AT MSU: 2011-14
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 5 TKL, 2 AST, 7 TT, 1.0 TFL
Last Week: 1GS, 5 TKL, 2 AST, 7 TT, 1 TFL vs. Kansas City Chiefs (L, 20-34)

  • Leads the AFC in total tackles since 2016 (437)
  • Moved into seventh place in franchise history with the 35th tackle for loss of his career
  • Now tied for fifth-most games with a tackle (77) by a Texans player in their first six seasons

PERNELL MCPHEE | BALTIMORE RAVENS – LB | AT MSU: 2009-10
Season: 1 G, GS, 2 TKL, 2 AST, 4 TT
Last Week: 1 GS, 2 TKL, 2 AST, 4 TT vs. Cleveland Browns (W, 38-6)

  • Ranked second among Ravens defenders with an 84.1 run defense grade from PFF, which was also 10th in the NFL in Week 1

TYRE PHILLIPS | BALTIMORE RAVENS – OT | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: 1 G, GS, 2 Pressures Allowed
Last Week: 1 GS, 2 Pressures Allowed vs. Cleveland Browns (W, 38-6)

  • Played 56 snaps, allowing two pressures in his NFL debut

DAK PRESCOTT | DALLAS COWBOYS – QB | AT MSU: 2011-2015
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 25-39, 266 YDS, 1 TD, 92.5 QBR, 3 RUSH, 30 YDS
Last Week: 1 GS, 25-39, 266 YDS, 1 TD, 92.5 QBR, 3 RUSH, 30 YDS at Los Angeles Rams (L, 17-20)

MARTINAS RANKIN (IR) | KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – OT | AT MSU: 2015-17
Season: Injured Reserve
Last Week: DNP vs. Houston Texans (W, 34-20)

WILL REDMOND | GREEN BAY PACKERS – S | AT MSU: 2012-15
Season: 1 G, 2 TKL, 1 AST, 3 TT
Last Week: 1 G, 2 TKL, 1 AST, 3 TT at Minnesota Vikings (W, 43-34)

CHAUNCEY RIVERS (PS) | BALTIMORE RAVENS – OT | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: Practice Squad

Last Week: DNP vs. Cleveland Browns (W, 38-6)

JEFFERY SIMMONS | TENNESSEE TITANS – DL | AT MSU: 2016-18
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 3 TKL, 1 AST, 4 TT, 1 FR
Last Week: 1 GS, 3 TKL, 1 AST, 4 TT, 1 FR at Denver Broncos (W, 16-14)

  • Recovered a fumble in the second quarter that led to a game-tying touchdown on the ensuing drive
  • Ranked second in the game with an 80.1 coverage grade from PFF, grade ranked third in the NFL among defensive linemen

DARIUS SLAY | PHILADELPHIA EAGLES – CB | AT MSU: 2011-12
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 2 TKL, 1 AST, 3 TT
Last Week: 1 GS, 2 TKL, 1 AST, 3 TT at Washington Football Team (L, 17-27)

  • Played 64 of 70 defensive snaps

PRESTON SMITH | GREEN BAY PACKERS – LB | AT MSU: 2011-14
Season: 1 GS
Last Week: 1 GS at Minnesota Vikings (W, 43-34)

TOMMY STEVENS (PS) | NEW ORLEANS SAINTS – TE | AT MSU: 2017-19
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (W, 34-23)

MONTEZ SWEAT | WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM – DE | AT MSU: 2017-18
Season: 1 GS, 2 TKL, 2 TT, 1.0 SK, 2.0 TFL, 2 QBH
Last Week: 1 GS, 2 TKL, 2 TT, 1 SK, 2 TFL, 2 QBH vs. Philadelphia Eagles (W, 27-17)

  • Recorded one sack for a loss of 12 yards
  • Totaled five pressures according to PFF

JORDAN THOMAS (PS) | ARIZONA CARDINALS – TE | AT MSU: 2016-17
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP at San Francisco 49ers (W, 24-20)

DARRYL WILLIAMS (PS) | KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – OT | AT MSU: 2015-19
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP vs. Houston Texans (W, 34-20)

K.J. WRIGHT | SEATTLE SEAHAWKS – LB | AT MSU: 2007-10
Season: 1 G, 1 GS, 1 TKL, 2 AST, 3 TT
Last Week: 1 GS, 1 TKL, 2 AST, 3 TT at Atlanta Falcons (W, 38-25)

  • Seattle’s third-highest-graded defender (71.2) according to PFF

ISAIAH ZUBER (PS) | NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS – WR | AT MSU: 2019
Season: Practice Squad
Last Week: DNP vs. Miami Dolphins (W, 21-11)

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