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Cardinals Practice-Squad Ledbetters are Related, Right? Think Again

Cardinals defensive linemen Jeremiah and Jonathan Ledbetter were signed to the team’s practice squad Sept. 3 and defensive end J.J. Watt was shocked to learn they’re not related.

Cardinals defensive end J.J. Watt was shocked the day he found out the team had signed defensive linemen Jeremiah Ledbetter and Jonathan Ledbetter to the practice squad.

He was even more surprised by what he and his teammates later learned.

Jeremiah was born May 29, 1994, in Orlando and attended Hutchinson Community College and Arkansas. He was a sixth-round pick of the Detroit Lions in 2017.

Jonathan was born Sept. 12, 1997, in Atlanta and attended Georgia. He entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent with the Miami Dolphins in 2019.

Both were signed to the Cardinals practice squad on Friday, Sept. 3, the beginning of the Labor Day weekend, and the next practice for the team was Monday, Sept. 6.

Watt said after signing they were added to the defensive line group chat, at which point position coach Brentson Bucker texted, “Guys, welcome Jeremiah Ledbetter and Jon Ledbetter.”

“And so I just sent that Spider-Man meme where they're pointing at each other. And, then the next day we got here, and I was like, ‘So you guys are brothers, twins.’ They’re like, ‘No.’ I was like, ‘Oh, like cousins?’ ‘No.’ I was like, ‘You're literally not related in any way?’ And they said, ‘No, we’ve tried to figure it out.’

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“So I told my brothers and my friends we signed them on the same day at the same position with the same name. Like, you have to be related. And then they said they've looked into like the bloodlines and everything and they're not related in any way. That's mind-blowing. The stats on that; if it was Vegas, odds would be 600,000 to 1.”

Jonathan does have an older brother Joseph, who played basketball at Pfeiffer University for two years and then transferred to Georgia and played tight end.