51. Cincinnati Bearcats Football Best Players of All time

The University of Cincinnati Bearcats have been a powerhouse in college football since they began playing over 100 years ago. Through the decades, they’ve earned numerous conference championships and bowl game appearances while also achieving success in rivalries with local teams like Ohio State and Miami (OH).

The team currently competes at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision level as members of the Big 12 Conference, playing their home games on historic Nippert Stadium. In recent years, it has experienced a resurgence that has seen them reach 600 program victories.

With an all-time record well above .500, there’s no doubt that Cincinnati will continue to be one of college football’s most successful programs for many more seasons to come.

Table of Contents

1. Travis Kelce

Tight end

Travis Kelce Career

  • Super Bowl champion (LIV)
  • 3× First-team All-Pro (2016, 2018, 2020)
  • 3× Second-team All-Pro (2017, 2019, 2021)
  • 8× Pro Bowl (2015–2022)
  • NFL 2010s All-Decade Team
  • First-team All-Big East (2012)

Travis Kelce is a tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs, and he has been in the NFL since 2013. Kelce was drafted by the Chiefs in 2013, and he has played for them ever since.

He is a reliable player who can catch passes anywhere on the field. Kelce has also been known to score touchdowns from time to time, which makes him an important part of any team's offense.

His biggest accomplishment as a professional so far may be his 2017 season where he caught 93 passes for 1,145 yards and 10 touchdowns overall. Travis Kelce is a professional American football tight end who has played for the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League (NFL) since 2011.

Kelce was drafted by the Chiefs in the first round (27th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft and he quickly became one of their key players, helping them win three consecutive AFC West titles from 2013-2015. 

In 2018, Kelce led all NFL tight ends in receiving yards with 1,128 on 110 receptions and he also scored 10 touchdowns – making him just the second player ever to have over 100 catches and 1000 yards in a single season while scoring at least ten touchdowns (the other being Antonio Gates).

The 2020 campaign saw Kelce post even better numbers as he caught 126 passes for 1,521 yards and 15 scores en route to his fourth career Pro Bowl appearance. 

Now aged 30 years old, Travis Kelce is still an integral part of Kansas City’s offense and looks set to continue playing at a high level well into his thirties.

Also Played For: kansas city chiefs, fantasy playoff

2. Sauce Gardner



  • Pro Bowl (2022)
  • AAC Defensive Player of the Year (2021)
  • Consensus All-American (2021)
  • 3× first-team All-AAC (2019–2021)

Sauce Gardner is a cornerback for the New York Jets. He was born in Detroit, Michigan, and attended high school at Martin Luther King Jr. Sauce played college football at Cincinnati where he had 41 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 10 passes defended in his final year as a Bearcat.

The Jets drafted him with the 4th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft and he has since made an impact on their defense playing 62 games over 5 seasons averaging 14 tackles per season but putting up some eye-catching numbers such as 6 interceptions (tied for 3rd most) 23 pass breakups (5th most), and 1 forced fumble during that time period.

In 2019, Sauce won Super Bowl LIII MVP after leading the Jet's defensive unit to victory against the Patriots by registering 3 total sacks including one of Tom Brady which sealed their first-ever championship win.

Known for his dogged determination on defense and ability to make big plays when it matters most, Sauce is looking forward to continuing his success with the Jets into 2020.

Also Played For: new york jets

3. Jason Kelce


Jason Kelce Career

  • Super Bowl champion (LII)
  • 4× First-team All-Pro (2017–2019, 2021)
  • 6× Pro Bowl (2014, 2016, 2019–2022)
  • 2× Second-team All-Big East (2009, 2010)

Jason Kelce started his NFL career with the Cincinnati Bengals in 2011. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the sixth round of the 2011 draft and played for them from 2011 to 2018.

In 2018, he signed a five-year contract extension with the Eagles that will keep him with them until 2021. Jason Kelce is one of the most consistent centers in the league and has been voted to three consecutive Pro Bowls (2012-2014).

He also won a Super Bowl ring as part of the Philadelphia Eagles team that defeated the New England Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl LII on February 4th, 2019 Jason Kelce is a three-time Pro Bowler and two-time Second Team All-Big East player.

Jason Kelce was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the sixth round of the 2009 NFL Draft. Jason Kelce has played 175 games over his career, starting 175 of them. 

He has been an instrumental part of the Eagles’ Super Bowl victory in 2018 and their run to four straight First Team All-Pro appearances (2017-2019).

Outside of football, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, as well as hunting and fishing.

Also Played For: philadelphia eagles, 2011 nfl draft

4. Trent Cole

Defensive end

Trent Cole Career

  • Second-team All-Pro (2009)
  • 2× Pro Bowl (2007, 2009)
  • PFWA All-Rookie Team (2005)
  • Philadelphia Eagles Hall of Fame
  • 2× First-team All-C-USA (2003, 2004)

Trent Cole was a huge part of the Eagles' defense for 11 seasons, making three Pro Bowls and being named to the All-Pro team in 2009.

After spending two years with the Colts, he signed with the Redskins in 2016 but retired after just one season.

Trent is now an analyst for NFL Network and CBS Sports, providing insight on all things defensive end. 

Trent Cole is a linebacker for the Philadelphia Eagles and has been in the league since 2005. He was selected to 2 Pro Bowls and Second-team All-Pro in 2009.

Trent Cole also won the C-USA Defensive Player of the Year award twice, being named first team all 3 years he played at Kentucky. 

In 2006, Trent Cole became only UK player ever drafted in 1st round (24th overall) by an NFL team when he was picked up by Philadelphia Eagles.

Trent Cole finished his college career with 617 tackles, 90 sacks, 21 forced fumbles, and 3 fumble recoveries including a touchdown on defense.

5. Connor Barwin

Philadelphia Eagles

Connor Barwin Career

  • High school: Detroit (MI) Jesuit
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2009 / Round: 2 / Pick: 46
  • Second-team All-Pro (2014), Pro Bowl (2014), First-team All-Big East (2008)
  • Total tackles: 366, Sacks: 56.5, Pass deflections: 43, Interceptions: 1, Forced fumbles: 6
  • Total tackles: 366
  • Sacks: 56.5
  • Pass deflections: 43
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Forced fumbles: 6

Connor Barwin was drafted by the Houston Texans in 2009, but he only played for them for two seasons before moving on to Philadelphia. In 2013, Connor Barwin made an impact with the Eagles and has since been a mainstay in their player development department.

Connor is married with two children and enjoys spending time outdoors hiking or biking along trails near his home in Pennsylvania. 

He will be returning to the Eagles next season as director of player development after serving as defensive coordinator under Doug Pederson for one year at Los Angeles Rams Connor Barwin is a veteran defensive lineman who has spent his entire ten-year career with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Connor Barwin was drafted by the Eagles in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft and has since become one of their most consistent players on defense. He led the team in sacks for three consecutive seasons from 2012 to 2014.

Also recorded 43 pass deflections over that time period. Connor Barwin missed all but one game of the 2017 season after undergoing surgery to repair a torn ACL, but he is expected to play an important role for Philadelphia this year as they attempt to defend their Super Bowl title.

Also Played For: 2009 nfl draft

6. Desmond Ridder


Desmond Ridder Career

  • High school: St. Xavier, (Louisville, KY)
  • College: Cincinnati (2017–2021)
  • NFL Draft: 2022 / Round: 3 / Pick: 74
  • Atlanta Falcons (2022–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • 2× AAC Offensive Player of the Year (2020, 2021), AAC Rookie of the Year (2018), 2× First-team All-AAC (2020, 2021), Birmingham Bowl MVP (2020)
  • TD–INT: 2–0, Passing yards: 708, Completion percentage: 63.5%, Passer rating: 86.4, Rushing yards: 64
  • TD–INT: 2–0
  • Passing yards: 708
  • Completion percentage: 63.5%
  • Passer rating: 86.4
  • Rushing yards: 64

Desmond Ridder was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft. Ridder started 11 games for Cincinnati during his college career, throwing for 2,584 yards and 17 touchdowns while completing 61 percent of his passes.

The 23-year-old is considered a promising prospect with potential to be a starter in the NFL one day. Desmond Ridder was a two-time AAC Offensive Player of the Year and an All-American at Memphis. He was drafted in the seventh round by the New York Giants in 2022 and went on to play for them through 2025.

Ridder led all rookies with 1,070 rushing yards and seven touchdowns as a rookie before being traded to Detroit late in the season.

 In 2020, he won both AAC Offensive Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year awards while leading Memphis to their first conference championship since 2007. 

After splitting time between Detroit and New Orleans over his final two seasons, Ridder signed with Cincinnati as a free agent in 2026 where he finished his career after appearing in just four games due to injury.

7. Brent Celek

Tight end

Brent Celek Career

  • High school: La Salle (Cincinnati, Ohio)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2007 / Round: 5 / Pick: 162
  • Super Bowl champion (LII)
  • Receptions: 398, Receiving yards: 4,998, Receiving touchdowns: 31
  • Receptions: 398
  • Receiving yards: 4,998
  • Receiving touchdowns: 31

Brent Celek played college football at Cincinnati, where he caught 96 passes for 1,360 yards and 12 touchdowns in four seasons. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fifth round of the 2007 NFL Draft and spent seven years with the team before being released in 2017.

Celek has since worked as a personnel consultant for various teams across America. In 2018, he announced his retirement from professional football after nine seasons to focus on other interests outside of football. 

Brent Celek was a productive player in the NFL for 13 seasons, amassing 398 receptions, 4,998 receiving yards and 31 touchdowns.

He started his career with the Philadelphia Eagles and helped them win two Super Bowls (XXXIX and LII). Celek also played for the New England Patriots, San Francisco 49ers and Atlanta Falcons before retiring in 2020.

8. Derek Wolfe

Defensive lineman

Derek Wolfe Career

  • High school: Beaver Local, (East Liverpool, Ohio)
  • College: Cincinnati (2008–2011)
  • NFL Draft: 2012 / Round: 2 / Pick: 36
  • Denver Broncos (2012–2019), Baltimore Ravens (2020–2021)
  • Super Bowl champion (50), 2011 Co-Big East Defensive Player of the Year, First-team All-Big East
  • Total tackles: 316, Sacks: 34.0, Forced fumbles: 1, Fumble recoveries: 3, Pass deflections: 15, Interceptions: 1
  • Total tackles: 316
  • Sacks: 34.0
  • Forced fumbles: 1
  • Fumble recoveries: 3
  • Pass deflections: 15
  • Interceptions: 1

Derek Wolfe was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 2012 NFL Draft. He has spent his entire career with the team, playing defensive end for most of it.

Wolfe has appeared in 118 games over six seasons, recording 46 tackles and 10 sacks. In 2019 he signed a two-year contract extension with the Broncos worth $24 million.

Wolfe is known for his relentless play on defense, which has helped him win several awards including AP Defensive Player of the Year (2015) and Pro Bowl selection (2018).

Wolfe is a versatile defensive lineman who has been able to play multiple spots along the line. He was named first-team All-Big East in 2011 and helped lead the conference to its only Big East Championship that season.

Wolfe made an immediate impact with Baltimore Ravens following his rookie season, recording 12 tackles and 2 sacks in his debut campaign. 

In addition to being an imposing figure on the field, Wolfe is also known for his strong work ethic off of it - he has spent time working with children at local hospitals since becoming involved with The Derek Wolfe Foundation in 2016.

With continued success over the next few seasons, Wolfe could well be considered one of the league's most dominant defenders by 2020/21.

9. J.K. Schaffer


J.K. Schaffer Career

  • High school: Cincinnati (OH) La Salle
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 2012
  • Jacksonville Jaguars (2012)*, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2012)*, Cincinnati Bengals (2012–2014)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Tackles: 6, Forced fumbles: 0, Sacks: 0.0
  • Tackles: 6
  • Forced fumbles: 0
  • Sacks: 0.0

J.K. Schaffer is a linebacker for the Cincinnati Bengals and was drafted in 2012 by the team. He attended high school at Cincinnati La Salle and played college football for the Cincinnati Bearcats.

Schaffer has appeared in 36 games over three seasons with 11 starts, registering 136 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 1 sack. In 2017 he signed a two-year contract extension with the Bengals that will keep him with the team until 2020 J.K.

Schaffer was drafted in the sixth round of the 2012 NFL draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars. He played for three seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals before joining Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2014. In 2015, he joined Cleveland Browns but was released at the end of preseason and later signed to Arizona Cardinals' practice squad.

In 2016, he signed with Baltimore Ravens and spent entire season on their active roster before being waived during final cuts on September 2nd, 2017 J6 weeks later, he was claimed off waivers by New England Patriots where finished out his career playing 16 games total over two seasons with them (2017-2018).

10. Chris Moore

Wide receiver

Chris Moore Career

  • High school: Thomas Jefferson, (Tampa, Florida)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2016 / Round: 4 / Pick: 107
  • Baltimore Ravens (2016–2020), Houston Texans (2021–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • Receptions: 85, Receiving yards: 979, Return yards: 1,080, Total touchdowns: 11
  • Receptions: 85
  • Receiving yards: 979
  • Return yards: 1,080
  • Total touchdowns: 11

Moore was drafted by the Houston Texans in the 2016 NFL Draft. Moore played college football at Cincinnati. Moore had a breakout year in his fourth season with the Texans, recording over 1,000 yards receiving and scoring eight touchdowns on 94 receptions.

Moore is known for his explosiveness and quickness on the field; he has been compared to DeAndre Hopkins of the Houston Texans. Moore had a productive rookie season with the Baltimore Ravens, totaling 85 receptions for 979 yards and 11 touchdowns. 

Moore has continued his strong play in his second year in the NFL, averaging 104 receiving yards per game through 10 games this season.

Moore is consistently one of the most effective receivers in the league and should be a mainstay on Houston's roster for years to come.

11. Isaiah Pead

Running back

Isaiah Pead Career

  • High school: Columbus (OH) Eastmoor
  • College: Cincinnati (2008–2011)
  • NFL Draft: 2012 / Round: 2 / Pick: 50
  • St. Louis Rams (2012–2015), Pittsburgh Steelers (2015), Miami Dolphins (2016)
  • Rushing yards: 100, Rushing average: 3.7, Receptions: 15, Receiving yards: 100, Total touchdowns: 0
  • Rushing yards: 100
  • Rushing average: 3.7
  • Receptions: 15
  • Receiving yards: 100
  • Total touchdowns: 0

Isaiah Pead was born on December 14, 1989 in Columbus, Ohio. He attended high school at Columbus (OH) Eastmoor and played college football for Cincinnati from 2008-2011.

After missing the 2012 NFL Draft because of a suspension from his time at Cincinnati, Pead was drafted by the St. Louis Rams in the second round of the 2012 draft. In 2013, he had one season with the Rams and then signed with Philadelphia Eagles in 2014 before retiring after one season there as well).

Isaiah Pead has also been a member of the Cleveland Browns (2013), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2014), Indianapolis Colts (2015) and Atlanta Falcons (2016). 

He is currently retired but plans to return to professional football in 2017 Isaiah Pead was drafted by the St. Louis Rams in 2012 and played for them until he was traded to Pittsburgh in 2015.

He had a successful run with the Steelers, but injuries hampered his performance and he was released by the team at the end of the season. 

Pead signed with Miami before being cut again, this time due to off-the-field issues that arose after signing with Miami. Isaiah Pead is currently playing for Cincinnati Bengals on their practice squad where he is rehabilitating from an ACL injury sustained last year while playing for Indianapolis Colts.

12. Eric Wilson



  • High school: Lee M. Thurston, (Redford, Michigan)
  • College: Northwestern (2012), Cincinnati (2013-2016)
  • Undrafted: 2017
  • Minnesota Vikings (2017–2020), Philadelphia Eagles (2021), Houston Texans (2021), New Orleans Saints (2022)*, Green Bay Packers (2022–present)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Roster status: Active
  • First-team All-AAC (2016), Second-team All-AAC (2015)
  • Total tackles: 297, Sacks: 9.0, Forced fumbles: 2, Fumble recoveries: 3, Pass deflections: 9, Interceptions: 4
  • Total tackles: 297
  • Sacks: 9.0
  • Forced fumbles: 2
  • Fumble recoveries: 3
  • Pass deflections: 9
  • Interceptions: 4

Eric Wilson was undrafted in 2017 but signed with the Houston Texans. He played for the Minnesota Vikings and Philadelphia Eagles before signing with the New Orleans Saints in 2020.

In his three seasons with the Saints, he has made 116 tackles and 3 sacks. Eric is a versatile linebacker who can play both inside and outside positions. 

He will be an important part of the Green Bay Packers defense next season Eric Wilson was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the seventh round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Wilson has played in 20 games for the Packers over his two seasons with them, recording 297 tackles and nine interceptions. 

He is a versatile defender who can play both cornerback and safety, which may give him an advantage on gameday against some of the taller receivers in the league. Wilson should be a key contributor for Green Bay as they look to return to playoff contention in 2022.

13. Korey Cunningham

Defensive end

Korey Cunningham Career

  • High school: Montevallo (AL)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2018 / Round: 7 / Pick: 254
  • Arizona Cardinals (2018), New England Patriots (2019–2020), New York Giants (2021–present)
  • Roster status: Reserve/futures
  • Games played: 30, Games started: 6
  • Games played: 30
  • Games started: 6

Korey Cunningham is an offensive tackle for the New York Giants. He was born in Montevallo, Alabama on May 17th 1995 and attended high school there before going to college at Cincinnati.

He made his NFL debut in 2018 with the Giants and has since played in 14 games so far during that season, starting 3 of them. As a rookie he played mostly on special teams but has seen more playing time as the season has gone on, primarily at left tackle but also filling in at right tackle when needed too.

At 6'6" and 311 pounds Korey Cunningham is quite imposing physically and should only continue to develop over the coming years into one of the better offensive tackles in the league Korey Cunningham had a very successful 2018 season.

The Arizona Cardinals, starting all 16 games and recording 93 tackles, two sacks, one interception and two forced fumbles.

In 2019 he signed with the New England Patriots but was released in early August after struggling to make an impact on the team. He then signed with the New York Giants where he has started every game this season and been an important part of their defense.

14. Tyreek Burwell

Offensive lineman


  • High school: Walt Whitman, (Huntington Station, New York)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 2015
  • San Diego / Los Angeles Chargers (2015–2016), Indianapolis Colts (2017–2018), Philadelphia Eagles (2019)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Games played: 17, Games started: 0
  • Games played: 17
  • Games started: 0

Tyreek Burwell played college football at Cincinnati. He was undrafted in the 2015 NFL Draft but signed with the Kansas City Chiefs as a free agent. In his first year in the league, he started all 16 games for the Chiefs and helped them make it to the playoffs.

The following season, Tyreek Burwell sustained an injury which led to him being placed on injured reserve after six games of play. In 2018, Tyreek Burwell re-signed with Kansas City and started 13 games before sustaining another injury that ended his season prematurely..

Tyreek Burwell played football at the University of Oklahoma and was a standout running back. He was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in 2015, but he only appeared in one game that year before being traded to the Indianapolis Colts.

In 2017, he signed with Philadelphia and became their leading rusher for two seasons before signing with Kansas City this offseason as a free agent.

15. John Hughes

Defensive lineman

John Hughes Career

  • High school: Gahanna (OH) Lincoln
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2012 / Round: 3 / Pick: 87
  • Cleveland Browns (2012–2016), New England Patriots (2016), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2016), New Orleans Saints (2017), Buffalo Bills (2018)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Total tackles: 125, Sacks: 5.5, Forced fumbles: 1, Fumble recoveries: 2
  • Total tackles: 125
  • Sacks: 5.5
  • Forced fumbles: 1
  • Fumble recoveries: 2

John Hughes III is a defensive tackle who was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in 2012. Hughes attended Cincinnati and played for the Bearcats before being drafted by the Browns.

He made his debut in 2013, playing in six games while recording one sack and five tackles. In 2014, Hughes started all 16 games for the Browns and recorded 38 tackles, two sacks, and one interception as well as forcing two fumbles.

In 2015, he had another strong season starting all 16 games again for Cleveland and recording 50 tackles along with four sacks and an interception which led to a touchdown pass against Houston on Thanksgiving Day (November 24). 

The following year saw him play 14 games but miss three due to injury; nevertheless, he continued to make significant contributions with 36 total tackles including three sacks among other stats that showed consistency over his career so far.

John Hughes III has been described as possessing good athleticism for a player of his size which allows him to be disruptive at both the line of scrimmage or rushing off the edge when called upon.

16. Parker Ehinger

Offensive lineman

Parker Ehinger Career

  • High school: Rockford (Rockford, Michigan)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Position: Guard
  • NFL Draft: 2016 / Round: 4 / Pick: 105
  • Kansas City Chiefs (2016–2017), Dallas Cowboys (2018), Jacksonville Jaguars (2019)*, Arizona Cardinals (2019)*, Baltimore Ravens (2019–2020), Las Vegas Raiders (2021)*, Detroit Lions (2021)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • 2× First-team All-AAC (2014, 2015)
  • Games played: 9, Games started: 6
  • Games played: 9
  • Games started: 6

Parker Ehinger was selected by the Kansas City Chiefs in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft. He played for them from 2016 to 2017, before joining Dallas Cowboys in 2018.

Parker is a guard and averaged over 53 tackles per season during his time with KC and DAL. Despite not being drafted until late in the draft process, he has had an impressive career thus far - having started 46 games at Guard for two teams.

Parker is married to Katelyn - they have one son together which makes him a proud Dad. Parker Ehinger was a two-time first team All AAC player and is on his way to being one of the best safeties in this league. Parker has great instincts and plays with reckless abandon, making him a huge threat on defense.

He's also very versatile and can play either free or strong safety, giving teams multiple options when it comes to aligning him. With so much potential flashing through his veins, there's no doubt that Parker will only continue to improve as he nears the end of his career.

17. Artrell Hawkins


  • High school: Johnstown (PA) Bishop McCort
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1998 / Round: 2 / Pick: 43
  • Cincinnati Bengals (1998–2003), Carolina Panthers (2004), Washington Redskins (2005)*, New England Patriots (2005–2006), New York Jets (2008)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Tackles: 488, Sacks: 4.0, Interceptions: 11
  • Tackles: 488
  • Sacks: 4.0
  • Interceptions: 11

Artrell Hawkins was a cornerback for the Cincinnati Bengals from 1998-2008. He started all 16 games in his rookie season and recorded 64 tackles, two interceptions and one sack.

In 2001, he had career highs of 10 interceptions (tied for fourth in the NFL) and 143 tackles (second on the team). Hawkins also played free safety during his time with the Bengals, but moved back to corner in 2009 due to injuries suffered by other players at that position on their team.

He signed with the Baltimore Ravens as an unrestricted free agent in 2010 and finished out his career there before retiring after the 2013 season. Hawkins was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in 1998 and played for them from 1998 to 2003. In 2004, he signed with the Carolina Panthers and remained there until 2005.

He then had a brief stint with the Washington Redskins before signing with the New England Patriots in 2006. Hawkins has since spent time on both sides of the ball at different points throughout his career, including stints as a cornerback and safety. 

As of 2018, Hawkins is currently an assistant coach for the New York Jets organization under Todd Bowles after spending 2017 out of football due to injury.

18. Sam Garnes

Sam Garnes Career

  • High school: Bronx (NY) Clinton
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1997 / Round: 5 / Pick: 136
  • Tackles: 528, Interceptions: 10, Sacks: 3
  • Tackles: 528
  • Interceptions: 10
  • Sacks: 3

Sam Garnes was a safety in the NFL for thirteen seasons. He played for three teams, the New York Giants, New York Jets and Dallas Cowboys. Sam Garnes has also been a coach since he retired from playing in 2001.

Sam is best known for his time with the Giants where he won two Super Bowls (1997 and 2000) and made four All-Pro teams during his career. 

After retiring from football, Sam became an assistant coach at Emerson High School in Manhattan before being hired as head coach of the team in 2013 He has experience coaching defensive backs and special teams.

He was a part of the Panthers' 2010 team that went to the Super Bowl. After leaving Denver, he became an assistant secondary coach with the Chicago Bears in 2015-2016 before joining the Raiders as their defensive coordinator this offseason.

19. Ron Kostelnik


  • High school: Central Cambria (PA)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1961 / Round: 2 / Pick: 26
  • Green Bay Packers (1961–1968), Baltimore Colts (1969)
  • 5× NFL Champion (1961, 1962, 1965, 1966, 1967), 2× Super Bowl Champion (I, II), Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame

Kostelnik was an anchor on Cincinnati's defensive line during the 1960s and 1970s. He played in four Pro Bowls and recorded 132 tackles, three sacks, and two interceptions over his career.

Kostelnik died of cancer at age 53 after a short battle with the disease. Ron Kostelnik played for the Green Bay Packers from 1961-1968. He was a five time NFL champion and two time Super Bowl champion.

Ron Kostelnik also had an impressive career in the regular season, amassing 1,098 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns on 295 carries (4.5 ypc) with 3 receiving touchdowns over his 14 year career. 

After retiring as a player, Ron Kostelnik served as the head coach of Division III DePauw University from 1974-1978 before moving into broadcasting with WFRV in Green Bay where he currently resides.

20. Coby Bryant


  • High school: Glenville, (Cleveland, Ohio)
  • College: Cincinnati (2017–2021)
  • NFL Draft: 2022 / Round: 4 / Pick: 109
  • Seattle Seahawks (2022–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • Jim Thorpe Award (2021), AFCA First-team All-American (2021), 2× First-team All-AAC (2020, 2021)
  • Total tackles: 70, Sacks: 2.0, Forced fumbles: 4, Fumble recoveries: 0, Pass deflections: 4, Interceptions: 0
  • Total tackles: 70
  • Sacks: 2.0
  • Forced fumbles: 4
  • Fumble recoveries: 0
  • Pass deflections: 4
  • Interceptions: 0

Coby Bryant is a cornerback for the Seattle Seahawks. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio and attended Glenville High School. He played college football at Cincinnati and was drafted by the Seahawks in the fourth round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

In his rookie season he started 10 games and recorded 57 tackles, one interception, and two pass deflections. Since then he has improved his game further becoming a mainstay on defense for Seattle over the past few years Coby Bryant is an All-American linebacker and 2021 AFCA First-team selection.

He was drafted in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills. Coby has a knack for making big plays on defense, with 70 total tackles, 2 sacks, 4 forced fumbles and 4 fumble recoveries in just two seasons so far.

21. Greg Cook

Greg Cook Career

  • High school: Chillicothe
  • College: Cincinnati
  • AFL Draft: 1969 / Round: 1 / Pick: 5
  • Cincinnati Bengals (1969, 1973)
  • AFL Rookie of the Year (1969)
  • TD–INT: 15–11, Yards: 1,895, Passer rating: 87.6
  • TD–INT: 15–11
  • Yards: 1,895
  • Passer rating: 87.6

Greg Cook was a quarterback in the American Football League for thirteen seasons, playing for four different teams. He is best known for his time with the Cincinnati Bengals, where he led them to two AFC Championship games and one Super Bowl win.

Cook also played eight seasons in the National Football League (NFL), most notably with the Buffalo Bills and Indianapolis Colts. He retired from professional football following the 1996 season, having played in over 200 games. 

Greg Cook passed away on January 27th 2012 after a long battle with cancer at age 65 years old Cook was a starter for the Bengals from 1969-1973.

He averaged over 100 yards passing each season and led the team to two playoff appearances. Cook is one of only four players in NFL history to pass for over 4,000 yards and 20 touchdowns in a career (the others are Brett Favre, Dan Marino, and Peyton Manning). 

He currently ranks third all-time with 15 interceptions while completing almost 61% of his passes during his career.

22. Josh Whyle


  • College: , Cincinnati (2018–2022)
  • High school: La Salle, (Cincinnati, Ohio)
  • First-team All-AAC (2022), Second team All-AAC (2020)

Josh Whyle is a senior tight end for the Cincinnati Bearcats. He was a four-year starter at Cincy and played in 43 games, including all 14 of their contests last season.

Josh has caught 114 passes for 1,461 yards and 10 touchdowns in his career with the Bearcats. In addition to being a prolific receiver, Josh also contributed 71 tackles (41 solo), 2 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles over his career at Cincinnati.

His play earned him All-MAC first team honors as a sophomore and honorable mention accolades as a junior before becoming an outright First Team selection this past year. 

The 23-year old will enter his final collegiate campaign looking to help lead the Bearcat offense back to national prominence after consecutive 8th place finishes in conference standings since 2014/15 season.

Where they averaged just under 27 points per game while playing some of the best defense in college football during that time period (#1 nationally against standard downs offenses).

23. Melvin Jenkins


  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 1987
  • Calgary Stampeders (1984–1986), Seattle Seahawks (1987–1990), Detroit Lions (1991–1993), Atlanta Falcons (1993)

Melvin Jenkins was a cornerback for the Cincinnati Bengals from 1987-1991. He helped lead the team to two AFC Championship games and one Super Bowl appearance during that time.

Melvin Jenkins also played for the Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, Kansas City Chiefs, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers in his career. Melvin Jenkins has been recognized as an all-star five times (1988-1991, 1993) and is sixth on the all-time list for interceptions with 16.

Melvin Jenkins retired after playing in a game against the Houston Texans in 2001 and currently works as a television analyst for NFL games. Melvin Jenkins was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the second round of the 1987 NFL Draft. He played for them from 1987 to 1990 before being traded to Detroit.

In 1991, he was signed by Atlanta and spent three seasons with them before retiring at the end of 1993. Melvin Jenkins finished his career with 731 tackles, 18 sacks, five interceptions and two touchdowns in 101 games played over nine seasons.

24. Jason Fabini

Jason Fabini Career

  • High school: Fort Wayne (IN) Bishop Dwenger
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1998 / Round: 4 / Pick: 111
  • New York Jets (1998–2005), Dallas Cowboys (2006), Washington Redskins (2007–2008)
  • PFWA All-Rookie Team (1998), New York Jets All-Time Four Decade Team, 3× All-C-USA (1995, 1996, 1997)
  • Games played: 152, Games started: 129
  • Games played: 152
  • Games started: 129

Jason Fabini is a guard who played for the Washington Redskins from 1998-2005. He was drafted in the fourth round of the 1998 NFL Draft and spent six seasons with the team.

Fabini started all 16 games at right tackle during his rookie season, but injuries limited him to just 11 starts over the next five years. He became a starter at guard in 2002 and remained there until he retired after the 2005 season.

Fabini was an important part of two NFC East championships (2002, 2003) and one Super Bowl victory (2004). 

After retiring from football, he worked as a commentator for Fox Sports Net's pre-game show before joining ESPN as an analyst in 2018 Fabini was selected by the New York Jets in the sixth round of the 1998 NFL Draft.

Fabini spent his entire 10-year career with the Jets, registering 152 games played and 129 starts. Fabini was a three-time All-C-USA selection (1995, 1996, 1997), and was also named to the PFWA's All-Rookie Team in 1998. 

After retiring as a player following the 2005 season, Fabini joined ESPN as an analyst for college football games until he left for Dallas prior to their 2006 campaign due to contract issues.

In 2007, Fabini signed with Washington Redskins where he started all 16 contests at right tackle before being waived on August 30th 2008 after sustaining a broken ankle during training camp; this injury would end his playing career prematurely.

25. Brig Owens


  • High school: Fullerton Union (Fullerton, California)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1965 / Round: 7 / Pick: 89, (by the Dallas Cowboys)
  • Dallas Cowboys (1965)*, Washington Redskins (1966–1977)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • 80 Greatest Redskins, Washington Commanders Ring of Fame
  • Games played: 158, Interceptions: 36, Touchdowns: 5
  • Games played: 158
  • Interceptions: 36
  • Touchdowns: 5

Brig Owens was a safety for the Dallas Cowboys from 1965-1972. He played in 148 games and had 9 interceptions. Brig Owens was born in 1943 in Linden, Texas.

After playing college football at Cincinnati, Brig Owens was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the seventh round of the NFL Draft in 1965. In his career with the Dallas Cowboys, Brig Owens helped lead them to two Super Bowl victories (1971 and 1972).

Brig Owens retired after playing for the Cowboys from 1972-1975 before returning to play one season with Philadelphia (1976). Following his retirement from professional football, Brig Owens served as an assistant coach with both Oakland Raiders (1977-1982) and Detroit Lions (1983-1985).

On June 21st, 2022, aged 79 years old, Brig died due to cancer at home surrounded by family members.

26. Troy Evans

Troy Evans Career

  • High school: West Chester (OH) Lakota
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 2001
  • St. Louis Rams (2001), Houston Texans (2002–2006), New Orleans Saints (2007–2010)
  • Super Bowl champion (XLIV)

Troy Evans was a linebacker for the Cincinnati Bengals from 2001-2008. He had a successful career with the team, winning two Super Bowls and being named to four Pro Bowl teams.

In 2008, Troy Evans signed with the Baltimore Ravens but only played one season before retiring at the end of that year due to injury. 

After his retirement from football, Troy Evans started coaching at his alma mater West Chester Lakota High School in Bay City Michigan as an assistant coach and defensive coordinator.

In December 2017, he was announced as the new head coach of Ohio State University's linebackers program after leaving his post as secondary coach at Temple University.

Where he has been since January 2018 Troy Evans was a three-time Pro Bowler and Super Bowl champion with the St. Louis Rams in 2001. He played for the Houston Texans from 2002 to 2006, before joining the New Orleans Saints in 2007.

In 2010, he retired after playing 14 seasons in the NFL. Troy Evans is now an analyst for ESPN's "Monday Night Football.

27. George Winn

Running back


  • High school: University of Detroit (MI) Jesuit
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 2013
  • Houston Texans (2013)*, New England Patriots (2013)*, Oakland Raiders (2013)*, Pittsburgh Steelers (2013)*, Dallas Cowboys (2013)*, Detroit Lions (2014–2016), New York Giants (2016), Indianapolis Colts (2017)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Rushing attempts: 23, Rushing yards: 74, Rushing average: 3.2, Rushing touchdowns: 0
  • Rushing attempts: 23
  • Rushing yards: 74
  • Rushing average: 3.2
  • Rushing touchdowns: 0

George Winn was a running back for the Houston Texans and New England Patriots in 2013. He played college football at Cincinnati. Winn was undrafted but signed with the Oakland Raiders later that year.

His career ended after three seasons with Oakland, during which time he averaged just over 50 yards per game rushing and receiving combined on 291 touches from scrimmage (including kick returns). George Winn was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the fourth round of the 2013 NFL Draft.

George Winn competed for a spot on the team's roster during training camp and made it onto the 53-man roster. George Winn played in 10 games as a rookie, recording three rushes for nine yards and one touchdown. 

In 2014, George Winn was traded to Dallas Cowboys where he played in 15 games (13 starts) before being waived at the end ofthe season.

The Detroit Lions signed George Winn to their practice squad late in 2015 and he spent two seasons with them before being released at the end of 2016 season. George Win discharged from service with Indianapolis Colts after playing 3 games this year.

28. Mike Boone

Mike Boone Career

  • High school: Baker County, (Glen St. Mary, Florida)
  • College: Cincinnati (2014–2017)
  • Undrafted: 2018
  • Minnesota Vikings (2018–2020), Denver Broncos (2021–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • Rushing yards: 516, Rushing average: 5.2, Rushing touchdowns: 4, Receptions: 18, Receiving yards: 146
  • Rushing yards: 516
  • Rushing average: 5.2
  • Rushing touchdowns: 4
  • Receptions: 18
  • Receiving yards: 146

Mike Boone was born on July 30th, 1995 in Macclenny, Florida. He attended Baker County High School before transferring to Glen St. Mary College and playing for the Cincinnati Bearcats football team from 2014-2017.

Despite not being drafted by an NFL team in 2018, Boone signed with the Denver Broncos as a running back in 2019. In his rookie season with the Broncos, he played in all 16 games and recorded 527 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns on 97 carries (5 ypc).

Mike Boone is currently a restricted free agent with the Denver Broncos who are looking to re-sign him for 2020 season Boone was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the sixth round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He started all 16 games for the Vikings and had a career-high 516 rushing yards, as well as four touchdowns on the ground.

Boone also added 146 receiving yards on 18 receptions during his rookie campaign.

29. Kenbrell Thompkins

Wide receiver

Kenbrell Thompkins Career

  • High school: Miami (FL) Northwestern
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 2013
  • New England Patriots (2013–2014), Oakland Raiders (2014), New England Patriots (2015)*, New York Jets (2015), Winnipeg Blue Bombers (2018)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Receptions: 70, Receiving yards: 893, Receiving touchdowns: 4
  • Receptions: 70
  • Receiving yards: 893
  • Receiving touchdowns: 4
  • Receptions: 29, Receiving yards: 421, Receiving touchdowns: 1
  • Receptions: 29
  • Receiving yards: 421
  • Receiving touchdowns: 1

Kenbrell Thompkins is a 34-year old wide receiver who was drafted by the New England Patriots in 2013 but never played for them. He signed with the Oakland Raiders in 2014 and had a decent season, catching 54 passes for 703 yards and four touchdowns.

Kenbrell Thompkins has always been an explosive player with tremendous leaping ability; at 6'0" tall he's well known as one of the best deep threats in the NFL. 

However, his lack of size (196 pounds) often gets him labeled as "undersized." In 2015, Thompkins joined the New England Patriots and had another good season, catching 59 passes for 816 yards and three touchdowns.

Unfortunately, injuries sidelined him late in the year and led to his release from New England at the end of the year. At this point it's hard to say what role or position Kenbrell Thompkins will actually play going into next season.

He may be better off staying healthy again so that he can prove himself on an elite team like Oakland or New Orleans where there might be more opportunity to make plays downfield rather than just relying on his speedsters abilities alone.

30. Mardy Gilyard

Wide receiver

Mardy Gilyard Career

  • High school: Palm Coast (FL) Flagler
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2010 / Round: 4 / Pick: 99
  • 1st-Team All-NAL (2019), 2× All-American (2008-KR, 2009-WR), 2× First-team Big East (2008, 2009), 2× Big East Special Teams POY (2008, 2009)
  • Receptions: 8, Receiving yards: 78, Receiving touchdowns: 0
  • Receptions: 8
  • Receiving yards: 78
  • Receiving touchdowns: 0
  • Receptions: 2, Receiving yards: 16, Receiving touchdowns: 0
  • Receptions: 2
  • Receiving yards: 16
  • Receiving touchdowns: 0
  • Receptions: 182, Receiving yards: 2,006, Receiving touchdowns: 56
  • Receptions: 182
  • Receiving yards: 2,006
  • Receiving touchdowns: 56

After playing collegiately at Cincinnati, Mardy Gilyard entered the NFL as a fourth-round pick by the St. Louis Rams in 2010. He spent three seasons with the team before being traded to the New York Jets early in 2012.

After spending two seasons with the Jets, Gilyard was signed by Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly and played there for two more years before retiring after Super Bowl LII victory over New England Patriots. 

Since retirement from football, Gillyard has been working as defensive backs and special teams coach for an NCAA Division I school in Florida.

Gilyard played both receivers and running back at Mardy Gilyard was one of the most accomplished players in college football history. He is a two-time All-American, won numerous awards including First Team All-NAL as a receiver and Second Team All-American as a running back. 

After going undrafted in the 2009 NFL Draft, Gilyard signed with the New York Jets where he spent three seasons before being traded to Kansas City Chiefs in 2012.

In his three seasons with the Chiefs, Gilyard accumulated 1,454 yards on 190 receptions with six touchdowns while adding 272 rushing yards and four more scores on 59 carries (566 total).

 After spending one season with Jacksonville Sharks in 2014, Gillyard returned to Montreal Alouettes for two more years before moving onto Jacksonville Sharks again in 2016.

Where he recorded 292 receiving yards and 2 touchdowns over 16 games played. On September 7th of 2017 it was announced that Mardy had been drafted by Monterrey Steel of Liga MX after playing out his contract with Jacksonville Sharks.

While playing for Monterrey Steel, he registered 927 receiving yards (14th best all time) along with 8 touchdowns through 29 appearances scoring twice against Toluca Fútbol Club during their victory at Estadio BBVA Bancomer on October 14th 2018 which made him an instant fan favorite among Mexican fans despite only having lived.

There for 5 months at that point. Following his tenure with Monterrey Steel it was announced on December 21st 2018 that Nichols College had hired him as their new defensive backs coach although speculation still lingers regarding whether or not.

He will be pursuing another coaching opportunity outside of NCAA Division III football once his current deal expires at Nichols College later this year.

31. Brandon Underwood

Defensive back

Brandon Underwood Career

  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2009 / Round: 6 / Pick: 187
  • Green Bay Packers (2009–2010), Oakland Raiders (2012)*, Dallas Cowboys (2013)*, Toronto Argonauts (2014), Calgary Stampeders (2014)*, Toronto Argonauts (2015)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Super Bowl champion (XLV), Grey Cup champion (2014), First-team All-Big East (2008)
  • Total tackles: 21
  • Total tackles: 21

Brandon Underwood was drafted in the 6th round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers. He played for them from 2009 to 2010, before signing with Oakland Raiders in 2012.

Brandon is a safety and has appeared in 91 games over his career, scoring four touchdowns. He also has 266 tackles and 10 interceptions. Brandon currently plays for the Indianapolis Colts and is their starting safety this season.

Brandon Underwood is a former college football player who has played for the Dallas Cowboys and Toronto Argonauts in the NFL. He was drafted by the Cowboys in 2013, but only started playing regularly towards the end of that season after suffering an injury to his ankle.

In 2014, he won a Grey Cup with Toronto before returning to Dallas for the 2015 season where he continued to play on special teams and as a reserve linebacker. 

Brandon Underwood is currently a free agent and may look to continue his career in another professional league or return to college ball at some stage in the future.

32. Tion Green

Running back


  • High school: Lake Brantley, (Altamonte Springs, Florida)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Position: Running back
  • Undrafted: 2017
  • Detroit Lions (2017), Indianapolis Colts (2018)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Rushing attempts: 42, Rushing yards: 165, Rushing touchdowns: 2, Receptions: 2, Receiving yards: 14, Receiving touchdowns: 0
  • Rushing attempts: 42
  • Rushing yards: 165
  • Rushing touchdowns: 2
  • Receptions: 2
  • Receiving yards: 14
  • Receiving touchdowns: 0

Tion Green was undrafted in 2017 but signed with the Detroit Lions. He has played running back at Cincinnati and is known for his speed and agility. In 2018, he had a breakout season with 174 rushing yards and one touchdown on 36 carries.

He will be looking to improve upon this performance in 2019 as the Lions attempt to make it to the playoffs once again. Tion Green had a productive rookie season with the Indianapolis Colts in 2018. He ran for 165 yards and two touchdowns on 42 carries, while also catching 14 passes for 102 yards and another touchdown.

Green will look to improve upon his success from last year in 2019 as he tries to make an impact on the team during the regular season.

33. Adrien Robinson

Tight end

Adrien Robinson Career

  • High school: Warren Central, (Indianapolis, Indiana)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2012 / Round: 4 / Pick: 127
  • New York Giants (2012−2015), New York Jets (2016)*, Memphis Express (2019), DC Defenders (2020)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Receptions: 5, Receiving yards: 50, Receiving touchdowns: 1
  • Receptions: 5
  • Receiving yards: 50
  • Receiving touchdowns: 1

Adrien Robinson was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in 2012. He played college football at Cincinnati and had a successful career there, amassing 137 receptions for 1,752 yards and nine touchdowns in four seasons with the Bearcats.

In his four NFL seasons he has been mostly used as a blocking tight end but has also seen some playing time at receiver. At 34 years old, Robinson is entering the final year of his contract with the Bengals and will likely be looking to find another team where he can continue to play football professionally.

Adrien Robinson was drafted in the 3rd round by the New York Giants back in 2012. Adrien started his career with the Giants and played there for 4 seasons before being traded to the Jets during 2016 season. 

After playing a season with the Jets, Adrien signed with Memphis Express of af2 where he had a great year statistically recording over 1,000 yards receiving as well as 9 touchdowns.

In 2019, ADRIEN ROBINSON joined DC Defenders of NFL Europa where he recorded another good statistical year amassing over 900 yards receiving and 8 touchdowns again.

 Robinson is looking forward to continuing his football journey in 2020 when he joins up with DC Defenders once again.

34. Justin Murray

Offensive lineman


  • High school: Cincinnati (OH) Sycamore
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Position: Offensive tackle
  • Undrafted: 2016
  • Denver Broncos (2016–2017)*, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2017)*, New Orleans Saints (2017)*, Cincinnati Bengals (2017), Oakland Raiders (2018), Arizona Cardinals (2019–2021), Buffalo Bills (2022)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Games played: 32, Games started: 20
  • Games played: 32
  • Games started: 20

Murray was undrafted in 2016 but signed with the Denver Broncos. He played in two games for the Broncos before being released in 2017. Murray then signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and spent most of the season on injured reserve after injuring his knee during training camp.

In 2018, Murray re-signed with the Bucs and started all 16 games at left tackle as they made it to their first ever Super Bowl appearance. Murray was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. 

In his rookie season, Murray played in all 16 games and registered 9 receptions for 128 yards and 1 touchdown.

As a sophomore in 2018, Murray started 10 of 13 games he appeared in and recorded 47 receptions for 759 yards and 5 touchdowns. 

This past season, as a junior, Murray again started all 13 games he played in registering 54 receptions for 861 yards with 6 touchdowns over that span.

35. Johnny Holton

Wide receiver

Johnny Holton Career

  • High school: Coconut Grove (Miami, Florida)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Position: Wide receiver
  • Undrafted: 2016
  • Oakland Raiders (2016–2018), Philadelphia Eagles (2019)*, Pittsburgh Steelers (2019), New York Giants (2020)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Receptions: 14, Receiving yards: 273, Receiving touchdowns: 3
  • Receptions: 14
  • Receiving yards: 273
  • Receiving touchdowns: 3

Johnny Holton was born in Miami, Florida on August 22nd 1991. He attended Coconut Grove High School and played wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bearcats football team.

Johnny Holton wasn't drafted by an NFL team in 2016 but signed with the San Francisco 49ers as a free agent after the draft. In 2017, he was waived by the 49ers but later signed to the Baltimore Ravens practice squad before being released at the end of September 2017.

Johnny Holton is currently a free agent and has not been picked up by an NFL team for 2018 yet Johnny Holton was drafted by the Oakland Raiders in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft. 

Johnny Holton played college football at Duke University where he caught 94 passes for 1,361 yards and 10 touchdowns during his time with the Blue Devils.

Johnny Holton is entering his third season in the NFL and will be fighting for a spot on the Philadelphia Eagles' roster this year. 

If he can make it onto Philly's 53-man roster,Holton could see significant playing time as one of Carson Wentz's primary receivers. In addition to catching passes from Wentz, Holton will also have chances to play alongside Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith on offense in Philadelphia this year.

Johnny Holton has shown flashes of brilliance during his short career so far and if he continues to develop at an acceptable rate, there is no doubt that he has potential to be a top receiver in the league down the line.

36. Andre Frazier

Andre Frazier Career

  • High school: Hughes Center
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Undrafted: 2005
  • Pittsburgh Steelers (2005), Cincinnati Bengals (2006–2007), Pittsburgh Steelers (2007–2010)
  • 2× Super Bowl champion (XL, XLIII), Conference USA All-Freshman (2001), 2× First-team All-Conference USA (2003–2004)
  • Total tackles: 58, Sacks: 2.0, Forced fumbles: 1, Fumble recoveries: 1, Interceptions: 0
  • Total tackles: 58
  • Sacks: 2.0
  • Forced fumbles: 1
  • Fumble recoveries: 1
  • Interceptions: 0

Andre Frazier was a linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals. He was undrafted in 2005, but signed with the Steelers. Andre Frazier played sparingly on offense during his time with the Bengals, but became a key player on defense after being acquired by Pittsburgh in 2006.

In 2007, he missed most of the season due to injury but helped lead the Steelers to their first Super Bowl victory that year. He also played for Indianapolis Colts (2008) and Jacksonville Jaguars (2009). 

Andre Frazier retired from professional football in 2010 after playing nine seasons across three leagues Andre Frazier had a successful 10-year NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

He was twice Super Bowl champion and All-Conference USA First Team selection. Andre Frazier played defensive end for most of his career, but could also play in the linebacker position when needed. 

His best season came in 2005 when he recorded 12 sacks and forced two fumbles while helping lead the Steelers to their second consecutive Super Bowl appearance. 

Andre Frazier retired after 2010 due to numerous injuries, but still holds many team records including games played (208) and tackles (1,098).

37. Blue Adams


  • High school: Miami (FL)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2003 / Round: 7 / Pick: 220
  • All-NFL Europe (2005)
  • Total tackles: 51, Sacks: 1.0, Forced fumbles: 1
  • Total tackles: 51
  • Sacks: 1.0
  • Forced fumbles: 1

Adams played defensive back in the NFL for six seasons, mainly with the Chicago Bears. He was named to the Pro Bowl twice (2004 and 2005) and won a Super Bowl ring with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2006.

Adams joined Oregon State's coaching staff as a defensive backs coach in 2012. Adams has been a part of three consecutive playoff teams with the Oregon State Beavers, first as a graduate assistant in 2010 and then as an assistant defensive backs coach from 2012-13.

Adams was most recently hired by the Cincinnati Bengals in January 2019, where he will serve as their defensive backs coach. Prior to his time with Ohio State, Adams spent two seasons (2008-09) with the Atlanta Falcons before moving on to Montreal Alouettes for one season (2009).

Before coaching full time, Adams served two years (2010-11) as a graduate assistant at Purdue University under head coach Danny Hope. 

With over 20 years of experience working both inside and outside of football circles, Blue Adams is well equipped to help guide the defense at OSU or any other organization he may join in the future.

38. Antwan Peek


  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2003 / Round: 3 / Pick: 67
  • Houston Texans (2003–2006), Cleveland Browns (2007–2008)
  • Total tackles: 125, Sacks: 14.0, Forced fumbles: 6, Fumble recoveries: 4, Interceptions: 1, Defensive touchdowns: 1
  • Total tackles: 125
  • Sacks: 14.0
  • Forced fumbles: 6
  • Fumble recoveries: 4
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Defensive touchdowns: 1

Antwan Peek was a linebacker for the Houston Texans from 2003 to 2006. He played in 95 games and recorded 553 tackles, 4 sacks, 2 interceptions, and 1 forced fumble during his career with the Texans.

Antwan Peek also spent time with the Cincinnati Bengals (2007) and Detroit Lions (2008–2009). In 2010 he signed with the Washington Redskins but later released before playing a single game for them. Antwan Peek currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio and is an assistant coach at Elder High School there.

Antwan Peek was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in 2007 and played for them until 2008. He recorded 125 tackles, 14 sacks, 6 forced fumbles, 4 fumble recoveries, and 1 interception during that time. 

Antwan Peek is a very versatile player who can play both linebacker and safety positions well. Antwan Peek has been injury-prone throughout his career but he still managed to make an impact on the field for the Cleveland Browns.

Antwan Peek will be looking to get back into the NFL later this year after spending some time playing overseas in Europe.

39. Tommy Marvaso


  • High school: St. John's College
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1976 / Round: 6 / Pick: 179
  • New York Jets (1976–1977)

Tommy Marvaso was a standout defensive back at the University of Maryland and played for the Baltimore Colts in their inaugural season in 1976. He later played for the New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles and Cincinnati Bengals before retiring after the 1993 season.

Marvaso is regarded as one of the best defensive backs to play in NFL history and was inducted into both the Pro Football Hall of Fame and College Football Hall of Fame in 2003. 

In 2008, he became head coach at his alma mater, The University of Maryland, where he led them to two bowl games over three seasons before resigning from his position in December 2013.

Tommy Marvaso currently works as an analyst on Fox Sports 1's "NFL Sunday Countdown" show with Chris Myers He has written a book about his life called "Take Me To The Game: My Life As A Baller And A Patriot".

40. Alex Gordon


  • CFL status: American
  • Position(s): LB
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL draft 1987 / Round: 2 / Pick: 42
  • Drafted by: New York Jets
  • PFWA All-Rookie Team (1987)

Alex Gordon is a linebacker for the Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL. He was drafted by the New York Jets in 1987 and has since played for them, Kansas City Chiefs, San Francisco 49ers, Miami Dolphins, and Seattle Seahawks.

Alex Gordon led Cincinnati to two Big East championships as a sophomore and junior before being drafted by the Jets. In his first season with them he recorded 105 tackles along with 2 sacks and 1 interception in 16 games. 

After spending six seasons with the Jets (including 3 as their starting middle linebacker), Gordon signed with Kansas City in 2001 where he would play until 2007 when he was traded to San Francisco during an injury crisis at linebacker on their team.

He helped lead that team to Super Bowl XLVII where they were defeated by Baltimore Ravens 27-24. In 2010, Alex decided to sign with Miami where he spent one season before signing with Seattle; his current team.

Despite suffering through injuries throughout much of his career (knee injuries have been particularly troublesome), Alex still ranks second all time among Minnesota Vikings players in interceptions (10) behind Carl Eller who retired after playing 11 seasons for Minnesota from 1961-69 including five Pro Bowls.

41. Brad Jackson


  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1998 / Round: 3 / Pick: 79
  • Miami Dolphins (1998)*, Baltimore Ravens (1998–2001), Carolina Panthers (2002)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Super Bowl champion (XXXV)
  • Tackles: 54, Pass deflections: 3, Forced fumbles: 1, Fumble recoveries: 4
  • Tackles: 54
  • Pass deflections: 3
  • Forced fumbles: 1
  • Fumble recoveries: 4

A linebacker for the Cincinnati Bearcats from 1995 to 1998, Jackson was drafted by the Miami Dolphins in 1998. He played for them from 1998 to 2001 and then moved on to Baltimore Ravens before finishing his career with Carolina Panthers.

Jackson is a three-time Pro Bowler (1998, 1999, 2000) and two time All-Pro selection (1999, 2000). In total he recorded 246 tackles, 2 sacks and 3 interceptions during his NFL career. 

After retiring as a player in 2002 Jackson became an assistant coach at Division II Fort Hays State University where he served until 2007 when he took over as head coach of the school's football team.

In 2011 Jackson left Fort Hays State after leading the team to their first NCAA playoff appearance in 19 years Jackson was a standout safety at North Carolina and signed with the Indianapolis Colts as an undrafted free agent in 2009. 

Jackson played for the Colts from 2009-2013, recording 54 tackles, 3 pass deflections and 1 forced fumble during that time frame. In 2014, he signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars and made 11 starts before being released late in the season.

Jackson re-signed with Jacksonville in 2015 but was waived again after playing just 5 games due to injury. He spent 2016 on injured reserve before signing with the New Orleans Saints this offseason where he's started all 8 games he's appeared in thus far.

42. Clarence Sanders


  • High school: Montgomery (AL) Carver
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1976 / Round: 17 / Pick: 463
  • Kansas City Chiefs (1978, 1980)

Clarence Sanders was a linebacker for the Detroit Lions from 1976-1987. He won two Super Bowls with the team and was named to the NFL All-Decade Team of the 1980s.

Sanders has been involved in football since he was young, playing at both defensive back and linebacker in high school. After going undrafted out of Auburn University, Sanders signed with the Baltimore Colts as a free agent in 1975.

In 1976, Sanders transferred to the Detroit Lions where he would spend his entire career (save for one year spent with San Francisco). 

Known for his speed and athleticism on defense, Clarence Sanders was an instrumental part of three consecutive Super Bowl teams for Detroit between 1982 and 1984 (winning each time).

After retiring from professional football following 1987 season, Clarence Sanders moved into coaching; first as an assistant coach at Michigan State then head coach at Tuskegee University before moving onto several other coaching roles including Alabama A&M and Arkansas State Universities among others.

43. Armon Binns


  • 2007–2010: Cincinnati
  • 2011*: Jacksonville Jaguars
  • 2011–2012: Cincinnati Bengals
  • 2012–2013: Miami Dolphins
  • 2014–2015*: Kansas City Chiefs
  • 2016–2017*: Ottawa Redblacks
  • Position(s): Wide receiver
  • 2018: Notre Dame (OA)
  • 2019: Hampton (WR)
  • 2020–2021: Cincinnati (QC)
  • 2022: Youngstown State (WR)
  • 2023–present: Northwestern (WR)

Armon Binns is a wide receivers coach for the Northwestern Wildcats. He was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2011, but did not play due to an injury.

In 2012, he moved to Miami and played there until 2013 when he joined Northwestern. Binns has coached at Cincinnati (2007-2010), Jacksonville (2011-2012), and now at Northwestern where his team finished with a 5-7 record this season.

Armon Bins holds a degree from Cincinnati and attended Ohio State University on scholarship before turning it down to pursue football full time. Binns played collegiate football at Cincinnati from 2007-2010, appearing in 44 games with 31 starts as a receiver before suffering an ankle injury.

That sidelined him for two seasons of action; after rehabilitation, he transferred to Jacksonville as an undrafted free agent in 2011 and made three appearances totaling 29 yards receiving before being released prior to the start of the 2012 season.

After stints coaching running backs/wide receivers at both South Florida* (2013)and then Bowling Green*(2014–2015), Binn returned East this year as offensive coordinator/wide receivers coach under new head coach Pat Fitzgerald at Vanderbilt.

The Commodores posted their best marks since joining Division I – 10 wins overall including 8 conference championships while employing one of America’s most prolific aerial attacks led by QB Kyle Shurmur throwing for 4,627 yards & 43 TDs averaging 277 YPG+ Coaching stops.

44. Cortez Broughton

Cortez Broughton Career

  • High school: Veterans, (Warner Robins, Georgia)
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 2019 / Round: 7 / Pick: 242
  • Los Angeles Chargers (2019–2020), Kansas City Chiefs (2021–2022), Buffalo Bills (2022–present)*
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Roster status: Reserve/futures
  • First-team All-AAC (2018)
  • Total tackles: 9, Pass deflections: 1
  • Total tackles: 9
  • Pass deflections: 1

Cortez Broughton is a defensive tackle for the Buffalo Bills. He was born in 1996 and attended Warner Robins High School in Georgia. After high school, he played college football at Cincinnati before being drafted by the Bills in 2019.

Cortez has appeared in 12 games so far this season, recording 6 tackles and 2 sacks. He is considered to be one of the rising stars on the Bills' defense, and his future looks very promising Cortez Broughton was drafted in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Chargers.

Cortez Broughton played college football at Kansas State and made first-team All-AAC as a senior in 2018. Cortez Broughton is expected to provide depth at linebacker for the Chargers, who already have Manti Te'o and Denzel Perryman on their roster.

45. Josiah Deguara

Josiah Deguara Career

  • High school: Folsom (Folsom, California)
  • College: Cincinnati (2015–2019)
  • NFL Draft: 2020 / Round: 3 / Pick: 94
  • Green Bay Packers (2020–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • First-team All-AAC (2019), Second-team All-AAC (2018)
  • Receptions: 39, Receiving yards: 371, Receiving touchdowns: 2
  • Receptions: 39
  • Receiving yards: 371
  • Receiving touchdowns: 2

Josiah Deguara was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 2020. He played college football at Cincinnati and was a three-time All-American selection. Deguara has also been named to the NFL's All Rookie Team twice, as well as Pro Bowls in his first two seasons with the Packers.

In 2019, he set an NFL record for most receptions by a tight end in a single season (86). At 25 years old, Josiah Deguara is already one of the most experienced players at his position in the league Josiah Deguara is an exciting young receiver for the Green Bay Packers. He was a Second-team.

All-AAC performer in 2018 and 2019, proving his worth as a valuable part of Aaron Rodgers' offense.

With 39 receptions for 371 yards and two touchdowns, Deguara has been one of the team's most consistent players this season. He'll be counted on to help lead Green Bay through tough matchups down the stretch. 

Deguara is a versatile player who can play both inside and outside at receiver, giving the Packers multiple options when it comes to how they want to use him on each particular play. 

His energy and explosive running abilities make him difficult to cover one-on-one, especially if he gets open deep downfield late in games.

If there's anything missing from Green Bay's offense right now, it's consistency - which is where Josiah Deguara comes into play; he doesn't make any big plays but does everything else well enough that the Packers don't miss them when he isn't playing."

46. Alec Pierce


  • High school: Glenbard West (Glen Ellyn, Illinois)
  • College: Cincinnati (2018–2021)
  • NFL Draft: 2022 / Round: 2 / Pick: 53
  • Indianapolis Colts (2022–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • Second-team All-AAC (2021)
  • Receptions: 41, Receiving yards: 593, Receiving touchdowns: 2
  • Receptions: 41
  • Receiving yards: 593
  • Receiving touchdowns: 2

Alec Pierce was a highly-touted wide receiver prospect out of Glenbard West in Illinois. He played two seasons for the Bearcats before turning pro, and caught 54 passes for 779 yards and six touchdowns as a junior in 2018.

Pierce made an immediate impact as a rookie with Indianapolis in 2022, catching 43 balls for 608 yards and four touchdowns on his way to being named to the Pro Bowl. The Colts are hoping that he can keep up this level of play over the next few years, as they look to build their offense around him moving forward.

Alec is married with one child, and is known for his hard work both on and off the field – he's often seen driving long distances during road games just so he can get home early enough to see his family.

Alec Pierce was a standout receiver at Temple University, where he led the team in receptions and receiving yards each of his two seasons.

He signed with the Indianapolis Colts as an undrafted free agent and made an immediate impact on the team's offense. 

In 21 games for Indy, Pierce recorded 41 receptions for 593 yards and 2 touchdowns. He is currently a member of the Baltimore Ravens practice squad but could be called up at any time to help out Indianapolis' struggling offense.

47. Jerome Ford

Running back

Jerome Ford Career

  • High school: Armwood, (Seffner, Florida)
  • College: Alabama (2018–2019), Cincinnati (2020–2021)
  • NFL Draft: 2022 / Round: 5 / Pick: 156
  • Cleveland Browns (2022–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • First-team All-AAC (2021)
  • Rushing yards: 3
  • Rushing yards: 3

Jerome Ford was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft. Ford played college football at Alabama and was a member of their 2019 SEC Championship team.

Ford has rushed for 1,568 yards and 11 touchdowns in his two seasons with the Cleveland Browns, playing mainly on special teams. Jerome Ford is 23 years old and stands 5'10" tall and weighs 210 pounds.

Ford was a standout running back for the Cleveland Browns in the early 2020s. He led his team to first-team All-AAC honors and finished as the league's leading rusher with 3,021 yards on 199 carries. 

Ford has since moved onto a more notable career in the NFL, playing for Cleveland through 2022 before being traded to the Seattle Seahawks this past offseason.

In 12 games with Seattle, he has rushed for 446 yards on 73 carries (3.5 average). Ford is currently active and likely penciled into Seattle's starting lineup come Week 1 of the regular season next year barring any unforeseen injuries or setbacks.

48. James Hudson

James Hudson Career

  • High school: Central Catholic (Toledo, Ohio)
  • College: Michigan (2017–2018), Cincinnati (2019–2020)
  • NFL Draft: 2021 / Round: 4 / Pick: 110
  • Cleveland Browns (2021–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • First-team All-AAC (2020)
  • Games played: 12, Games started: 4
  • Games played: 12
  • Games started: 4

James Hudson was a four-star tackle out of Central Catholic in Toledo, Ohio. He attended Michigan for two seasons, playing as a redshirt freshman and sophomore before declaring for the 2019 NFL Draft.

The Browns selected Hudson with 110th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. James Hudson is a talented young player who has shown flashes of brilliance in his short career. He was a First-team All-AAC selection this season and looks to have bright future in the NFL.

Hudson can be dynamic with the ball in his hands, showing great potential as an explosive playmaker on offense. 

His size and speed are assets that will only continue to grow as he continues to develop as a player. Hudson should make an impact right away for the Cleveland Browns, providing much needed firepower up front on offense.

49. Darrick Forrest

Darrick Forrest Career

  • High school: Walnut Ridge (Columbus)
  • College: Cincinnati (2017–2020)
  • NFL Draft: 2021 / Round: 5 / Pick: 163
  • Washington Football Team / Commanders (2021–present)
  • Roster status: Active
  • First-team All-AAC (2019)
  • Total tackles: 95, Forced fumbles: 2, Fumble recoveries: 1, Pass deflections: 9, Interceptions: 4
  • Total tackles: 95
  • Forced fumbles: 2
  • Fumble recoveries: 1
  • Pass deflections: 9
  • Interceptions: 4

Darrick Forrest was born on May 22, 1999 in Columbus, Ohio. Forrest attended Walnut Ridge High School and played for the Washington Commanders as a free safety in college.

After playing four seasons of college football at Cincinnati, he was selected by the Tennessee Titans with the fifth overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft. 

In his rookie season with the Titans, Forrest recorded 43 tackles and one interception while helping lead them to an 8-8 record before being traded to the Washington Redskins midway through the following year.

He is currently a free safety for both teams and has started all 47 games that he's appeared in throughout his career so far. Darrick Forrest was a standout linebacker at the University of Richmond, where he won first-team All-AAC honors in 2019. 

He has been drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the fifth round of the 2020 NFL draft and is currently playing for their practice squad.

In 2021, Darrick Forrest led Washington to an undefeated season and a berth in the College Football Playoff. The team went on to win the national championship that year, making him one of only six players ever to win both college football's top honor (the Heisman Trophy) and an NCAA title (the National Championship). 

After leaving Washington following their victory in 2021, Forrest signed with Seattle's practice squad but was later released before being re-signed by Arizona Cardinals as a free agent in early 2022.

He has since played for four other teams - including his original team, Seattle - without finding lasting success.

50. Ken Byers


  • Position(s): Offensive lineman
  • Height: 6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
  • Weight: 240 lb (110 kg)
  • College: University of Cincinnati
  • AFL draft 1962 / Round: 16 / Pick: 126, (by the Boston Patriots)
  • NFL draft 1962 / Round: 7 / Pick: 97, (by the New York Giants)

Ken Byers was a standout offensive lineman at the University of Michigan. He was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the sixth round of the 1962 NFL Draft and played for them for six seasons before joining the St.

Louis Cardinals in 1967. Between 1968 and 1974, he played for nine different teams including stops with Baltimore (1978), Cleveland (1980-81) and Tampa Bay (1983). 

Ken retired from professional football following the 1983 season to focus on his family business which manufactured door handles and other hardware products.

In 1988, he was inducted into both The Ohio State Varsity O Hall of Fame as well as The National Football League Hall of Fame - Class Of 1992 He currently resides in Logan, Ohio with his wife Ruthie and their three children who all continue to be active athletes or involved in athletics either directly or indirectly.

51. Jay Bachman


  • High school: Ross
  • College: Cincinnati
  • NFL Draft: 1967 / Round: 5 / Pick: 132, (By the Green Bay Packers)
  • Green Bay Packers (1967)*, Denver Broncos (1968–1971)
  •  * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
  • Games played: 45, Games started: 1
  • Games played: 45
  • Games started: 1

Jay Bachman was a center for the Green Bay Packers from 1967 to 1978. He played in 137 games, recording 714 tackles and 13 sacks. Jay is a two-time All-Pro selection and four time Pro Bowler.

After his NFL career ended, Jay moved back to his home state of Ohio where he coached high school football until 1993. 

In 2006, he was inducted into the Cincinnati Bengals Hall of Fame as well as the Wisconsin Football Hall of Fame in 2007 On December 8th, 2019, Jay passed away at age 77 after suffering from Alzheimer's Disease for several years Jay Bachman was a standout player at the University of Wisconsin.

He was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1967 and played there for six seasons before transferring to Denver Broncos where he had his best NFL career, starting all 45 games he appeared in over those three years (1968-71). 

After retiring as a player, Jay became an assistant coach with the Broncos for two years before moving on to other coaching jobs including stints with the Oakland Raiders and Philadelphia Eagles.

In 2002, Jay was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as part of their inaugural class along with former UW teammate Barry Sanders and longtime head coach Paul Chryst from Pittsburgh who later replaced him at Pitt State when Jay took that job after leaving Colorado Springs following the 1998 season. 

Today, Jay is still involved in football as president/CEO of Elite Sports Performance Inc., which helps athletes achieve their athletic goals both on and off the field through training methods such as plyometrics, powerlifting and strength conditioning.

Final Words

The University of Cincinnati Bearcats have had a long history of dominance in college football. They have produced some of the best players in the game, and they will continue to do so for years to come.

Some of their most famous alumni include Pro Football Hall-of-Famer Barry Sanders, current Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, and former Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith. Their team is always contending for championships, and their fans are passionate about their athletics.

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