Former Packers in the XFL

Planning on watching the XFL? See where your favorite former Packers have landed. 

There are plenty of former Packers players suiting up in the XFL this weekend. If you aren’t sure which team to root for just yet, feel free to peruse this list and see if any names jump out at you. Now, this isn’t a comprehensive list by any stretch, because there are a lot of former Packers in the XFL, but here are some of the more notable names heading into Saturday: 

Dallas Renegades 

Josh Hawkins - CB

Hawkins was with Green Bay for the 2016 and 2017 seasons, breaking up seven passes and forcing one fumble during his tenure. Hawkins was with the Packers during their playoff run in 2016, playing mostly special teams. 

Donatello Brown - CB

Brown played for the Packers in 2017. He was with the team first on the practice squad before being added to the active roster in November. Brown had a strong preseason for Green Bay but never tallied any official stats during the regular season. 

Greer Martini - LB

With one of the best player names to date, Martini was with the Packers during the 2018 off-season. Martini never played any meaningful NFL snaps, but he did come close to latching onto the team’s 53-man roster out of training camp two seasons ago. 

D.C. Defenders

Malachi Dupre - WR

Dupre was selected by the Packers in the seventh round of the 2017 NFL Draft, but failed to make the 53-man roster out of training camp. Rather than sign to Green Bay’s practice squad, Dupre bounced around the league, spending time with the Bills, Texans, Seahawks, Cardinals, and Chargers before joining the XFL. 

Houston Roughnecks

Carl Bradford - LB

Linebacker Bradford was drafted by the Packers in the fourth round of the 2014 Draft, spending time with the Packers through 2016. He was primarily on the practice squad before being activated in late 2016. He played in four games for Green Bay, registering one tackle. 

Los Angeles Wildcats 

Winston Moss - Head Coach & General Manager

Perhaps the most recognizable name on the list, Winston Moss served as the linebackers coach in Green Bay in 2006 before being promoted to assistant head coach and linebackers coach from 2007 to 2018. He’s also a former NFL player himself, having been in the league from 1987 through 1997. Moss also won Super Bowl XLV with Green Bay. 

Dujuan Harris - RB

Harris spent time in the Packers backfield from 2012 to 2014. With a memorable backstory, Harris was a car salesman before signing to Green Bay’s active roster in December of 2012. He scored his first NFL touchdown the following week against the Lions, and then tallied two additional touchdowns in the playoffs against the Vikings and 49ers. 

New York Guardians

Justin Vogel - P

Vogel was the team’s punter during the 2017 season, playing in all 16 games for Green Bay. He was released in May of 2018 after the Packers drafted JK Scott. Vogel averaged 44.4 yards per punt with a long of 62. (Fun fact: I met Justin Vogel in a hotel elevator in Cleveland, Ohio the night before the Packers beat the Browns in overtime.)

DeAngelo Yancey - WR

Yancey was drafted by the Packers in the fifth round of the 2017 Draft and spent two seasons on Green Bay’s practice squad. Yancey made strides each training camp but was unable to put everything together and earn a spot on the 53-man roster. 

Seattle Dragons 

Dillon Day - C

Day is just about the closest Packers connection I can make for the Seattle Dragons. Day signed with Green Bay in December of 2017 and remained with the team through the offseason before being cut in September of 2018 on cutdown day. While he was on the active roster, he did not take any snaps for the Packers. 

St. Louis Battlehawks

Keith Ford - RB

Ford spent a short amount of time with Green Bay this past training camp, joining the roster in August due to so many injuries at the running back position. While he showed flashes, he was buried on the depth chart behind Aaron Jones, Jamaal Williams, Dexter Williams, and Tra Carson. 

Christine Michael - RB

Michael joined an injury-riddled Packers backfield in 2016, playing in six games for the Packers (including playoffs)  before being released. Michael scored one rushing touchdown and had a long of 42 yards with an average of 3.7 yards per attempt. 

Tampa Bay Vipers

Jordan McCray - C

Jordan McCray, twin brother of former Packers guard Justin McCray, was actually the first of the siblings to sign in Green Bay when he joined the team in 2014. He spent time on the practice squad in 2014 and was most recently with the Chicago Bears during 2019 training camp. 

Jake Schum - P

Schum was Green Bay’s punter during the 2016 season, kicking in all 16 games for the Packers. He punted 56 times for the team with a long of 65 and a 43.2 average per punt. Schum was placed on injured reserve in June of 2017 which led to Justin Vogel (now of the New York Guardians) taking over kicking duties for the 2017 season. 

Team 9

Team 9 is the XFL’s practice squad team full of players that can be added to any of the eight rosters throughout the season. Notable names include: 

Joe Callahan - QB

Callahan signed with the Packers in 2016 and was waived in October that same season. He spent time with the Saints and Browns before rejoining the Packers in December. In 2017, Callahan started the season on the practice squad before being added to the active roster in October to back up quarterback Brett Hundley. He spent time with the Eagles, Buccaneers, Ravens, and most recently the Detroit Lions before joining the XFL. 

Gerhard de Beer - OT

A fan favorite on namesake alone, de Beer was with Green Bay this past off-season after being added to the practice squad in November of 2018. Born in South Africa, de Beer played rugby and threw discus in high school before moving to America to play football in college. 

Marwin Evans - S

A Milwaukee, Wisconsin native, Evans was with the Packers for the 2016 and 2017 seasons. He played a majority of special teams snaps during his time in Green Bay, but he did play in all three playoff games during the 2016 season. Evans recorded one forced fumble and 23 combined tackles during the 2017 season. 

What do you think, Packers fans? Are you going to give the XFL a chance or are you going to wait it out until the NFL season starts again? My XFL allegiance lies with the Tampa Bay Vipers. I’ve been a fan of the McCray brothers for a long time, so I’m happy to see Jordan get another shot. Which team are you rooting for? Let me know in the comments! 

 

Maggie Loney is a writer for Cheesehead TV and podcasts for the Pack-A-Day Podcast and Pack's What She Said. Find her on Twitter at @MaggieJLoney.

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Comments (13)

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Lphill's picture

February 07, 2020 at 06:35 am

The shame of it is when players leave the Packers they usually wind up on the street , that doesn’t say much for the talent level. Has anyone seen Nick Perry ?

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Matt Gonzales's picture

February 07, 2020 at 08:05 am

Basis for comparison? The average career of an NFL player is under 4 years. Most street FAs and late round picks don't tend to last in the NFL. There is a tremendously larger talent pool trying to crack an NFL roster than there are spots for every team's 63 (active plus practice squad), and roster churn throughout camp and the season is incredibly common once you get past your assumed game-day starters (whose job is generally not safe either unless their contract outs undue burden on the team if cut or traded).

Most of these names were in-season signings (plugging holes left by a rash of injuries) or UDFA pickups after the draft.

To say one player whose injury history and inconsistent play kept him from finding a new team after being cut is indicative of anything is silly. CM3, Randall Cobb, Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Richard Rodgers, Jared Cook, Jon Ryan, Sam Shields, Tramon Williams, Casey Hayward, Micah Hyde, Damarious Randall, Taysom Hill, Giorgio Tevecchio, Josh Sitton, TJ Lang, Frank Zombo, and John Kuhn would like a word, please.

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mamasboy's picture

February 07, 2020 at 05:19 pm

Good point LP. I think most of the guys on the list will never be NFL ready. Carl Bradford especially.

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Hematite's picture

February 07, 2020 at 06:55 am

I'll probably pay fleeting attention to the XFL but not to watch Packers cast offs.
I just want to watch how this experiment plays out.
I don't expect much!

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DaHouse's picture

February 07, 2020 at 07:07 am

You say that like it's a bad thing. Why would you complain about poor players being let go? Give them credit for recognizing when improvements need to be made.

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PeteK's picture

February 07, 2020 at 07:54 am

I'm sure all the other few hundred players were draft busts from other teams. We must have done something good to be in the playoffs 14 of the past 20 yrs.

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Matt Gonzales's picture

February 07, 2020 at 08:11 am

I'm excited to see what the XFL can do. I think they missed a huge opportunity by only placing franchises within already established NFL markets, but the talent pool of potential players is probably large enough to put out at least a watchable product if they can keep themselves on firm financial footing.

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Jonathan Spader's picture

February 07, 2020 at 09:35 am

Vince Mcman who is fu ding the XFL has a networth estimated at 2.2 billion. He placed franchises within establed NFL markets in part so his teams would ja e stadiums to play in. The other part was having football starved fans give the XFL a try. He can expand i to markets without an NFL team if he can have success. I'm excited to see how the experiment turns out.

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Matt Gonzales's picture

February 07, 2020 at 10:40 am

I don't disagree with the logic - I just think there's going to be more fan apathy and the fanbase in those markets is going to immediately use their NFL franchises as a basis for comparison for the quality of the on field product.

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Jonathan Spader's picture

February 07, 2020 at 12:22 pm

What cities are big enough that you might get some interest that have a stadium you can play in that don't already have a sports team?

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Matt Gonzales's picture

February 07, 2020 at 12:36 pm

Literally any city with a sizable college program? Oregon, Iowa, Oklahoma, SC, Madison (would also pull in MKE and northern IL), all come to mind. If them Madison, OK, and Oregon are the ones where you have nearby metro areas, college stadiums from FCS and FBS schools (or even probably D2 programs which would likely work). Stadium lease deals would be tougher with FBS/FCS schools, I'm sure, but it could be done if they were motivated to bring off-season football to these markets and try to cultivate a true local fan base independent of an NFL franchise.

Watching live streams of AAF games, actual attendance looked similar to a D3 college football game. Finding suitable locations with fan capacity is probably not as big of a hurdle as you think it is.

They chose to play it safe to piggyback of NFL popularity. I get it. I just don't fully agree.

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Jonathan Spader's picture

February 07, 2020 at 06:26 pm

I'd think Saint Louis would be a good city to add to that list. Fans are still pissed about the LA Rams. Good list Matt.

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Ferrari-Driver's picture

February 07, 2020 at 11:15 am

Interesting. Thanks for posting.

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