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Hokies in the NFL: Preseason Week One

By Dominic Boltz | August 12
Hokies in the NFL: Preseason Week One
Tyrod Taylor working with Giants offense, via SBNation.com

Jets sign Duane Brown to two-year, $22 million contract

This week, New York Jets Tackle Mekhi Becton sustained a season ending knee injury. An MRI yesterday showed that Becton fractured his right kneecap, which means he will have to miss significant time to heal. Becton was sidelined for most of the 2021 NFL season after tearing this MCL in week one against the Panthers. With another knee injury and rehab in his future, the Jets needed a player to fill the hole on their offensive line that allowed the fourth most sacks in the NFL last season. This led the Jets to sign NFL Veteran and Hokie Alumnus Duane Brown to a 2 year, 22$ million dollar contract. Duane is the leader in career earnings among active VT players, with his current NFL earnings at 82$ million. Brown has performed well in the NFL for fourteen years, and could be an exceptional mentor for Mekhi Becton, who the Jets see as the leader of their offensive line in the future. Brown turns 37 this month, and with his age he is likely seen by the Jets as a temporary replacement and teacher for Mekhi Becton. With 5 pro bowls and numerous seasons of productive output, this signing puts Brown in a spot where he can make a great impact on the performance and culture of the New York Jets.

Tyrod Taylor impresses in his first performance for the New York Giants

Daniel Jones took the field to start in preseason week one against the New England Patriots. However, the best performance from the Giants QB room came from VT Alumnus Tyrod Taylor. In his first outing for New York, Taylor threw for 129 yards on 13/21 passing attempts. In his two drives he threw one touchdown to Richie James for a 7 yard score. He showed the poise and talent of a player who could be an exceptional season long backup, but also is prepared to step into a starting job if circumstances call for it. Tyrod has had a string of unfortunate injuries hindering his time with his previous teams, including having his lung punctured with the Chargers which lost him the starting job to eventual Rookie of the Year, Justin Herbert. Last year with the Texans, Taylor started the season strong until hamstring and wrist injuries kept him off the field for majority of the season. Now healthy, Tyrod has a chance to win back a starting job for a team that's offense that was 31st in the NFL in scoring last year, at just 15.4 points per game. Taylor has been a starting Quarterback for 4 teams in the past 5 years, giving him the experience to lead the Giants if he gets the opportunity.

Christian Darrisaw showing potential to take huge leap in year two

In week one this Preseason, Christian Darrisaw has showed the potential and athleticism that was expected of him when he was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings with the 23rd pick in 2021. Darrisaw slipped in the draft due to rumors of injuries that slowed his progress in his rookie year. The Vikings completed an overhaul of their coaching staff with first time Head Coach Kevin O'Connell leading the way. The new Vikings staff sees Darrisaw as a player that is primed to make a big leap in his second year. Darrisaw is listed at 6'5" weighing 315 pounds, giving him a frame that combined with his athleticism, could make him one of the more dominant lineman in the NFL. In 2021, the rookie Darrisaw allowed 5 sacks, which tied him at 19th in the league in sacks allowed. The Vikings see him as a player that if stays healthy, can lead the Vikings to breakthrough the playoff picture for the first time since 2019.

With the NFL season right around the corner and the Preseason underway, there is much for Tech fans to be excited about with our Alumni competing at the highest level. The Hokies have starters listed on 10 different teams, one All-Pro player in Wyatt Teller, along with various Hokies competing for playing time around the league. Watch out for more news from the Hokies in the coming weeks of the Preseason.

Stats from ESPN.com

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