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Beyond the Flats: NFL Week 1 Edition

Let’s see how our alumni did in Week 1 of the National Football League.

NFL: Miami Dolphins at Las Vegas Raiders Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

In this weekly feature, we’ll take a look at what Tech’s finest are up to since leaving the Institute. With the NFL kicking this off this week, we’ll take a look at how our NFL Jackets fared.

Jeremiah Attaochu, Linebacker, Chicago Bears

Now in his 8th NFL season and first with the Chicago Bears, Jeremiah Attaochu mostly sees the field in special teams, but on Sunday recorded 20 snaps and one tackle on defense in the Bears 14-34 loss to the LA Rams.

Harrison Butker, Place Kicker, Kansas City Chiefs

Back in 2014, Butker etched his name into GT lore by drilling a 53 yarder in Athens. Well, last week he hit from 64 yards and earned a day off for himself and his Kansas City teammates.

Butker started his season off perfectly, going 2/2 on field goals (28 and 43 yards) and 3/3 on extra points en route to a 33-29 Chiefs victory over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. Watch for Butker to push Baltimore’s Justin Tucker for the coveted AFC Pro Bowl and 1st Team All-Pro spots this season.

Adam Gotsis, Defensive End, Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville became a sort of North Avenue South this offseason, as former Jackets Jalen Camp, Nathan Cotrell, Tyler Davis and Adam Gotsis all signed with the Jags. Fast forward to Cut Day 2021, and Gotsis was the lone survivor in Jacksonville. Week 1 saw the Aussie inactive for the Jaguars’ 21-37 loss to the Houston Texans.

Of note: Camp (Texans), Cottrell (Jaguars), and Davis (Colts) signed to practice squads after being released by the Jaguars. Cottrell has since been waived.

Pressley Harvin III, Punter, Pittsburgh Steelers

After the most covered preseason punting competition in recent memory, PH3 prevailed over incumbent Jordan Berry, earning the punting job in Pittsburgh to the delight of fans everywhere. Even former Colts punter Pat McAfee is a fan, as evidence by the Harvin-signed Steelers helmet in his studio.

While hype and style are always fun, substance reigns supreme. Thankfully, Harvin showed in Week 1 why so many people were gassing up the big man, punting 5 times for a 41.2 net and a long of 51 yards, with 2 punts inside the 20 yard line. As a holder, he helped Chris Boswell go 3/3 on field goals and 2/2 on extra points during the Steelers’ 23-16 win in Buffalo. Not a bad start, Press. Now to get that first NFL touchdown throw...

Shaq Mason, Guard, New England Patriots

Ranked the 7th best guard by Pro Football Focus entering 2021, Shaq Mason continued his winning contributions (albeit in a losing effort, 16-17 to the Miami Dolphins). Mason played 79 total snaps, including all 75 offensive plays, and did not surrender a sack. He did earn a penalty on a blindside block late in the 3rd quarter, but I blame the rules, not the player.

Darren Waller, Tight End, Las Vegas Raiders

Waller kicks off his 2021 campaign tonight against the Baltimore Ravens (8:15 EDT, ESPN). After being voted #99 by his peers in the NFL 100 in 2020, Darren vaulted all the way to #35 overall player and #2 tight end coming into 2021. Make sure you check out the piece from the Las Vegas Review-Journal about Waller’s journey as he enters his 6th NFL season. Fun Fact: today is his 29th birthday, Happy Birthday Darren!

Raiders’ Darren Waller has come long way on, off field

Be sure to follow these former Yellow Jackets as they continue to do us proud in the NFL. If I missed anyone, please let me know and I’ll be sure to add them to future updates. Go NFL Jackets!