State Now

ACC to NFL: Miami leads the way

The University of Miami’s football program still does one thing right — produce NFL players.

The Hurricanes, who have five national titles but no ACC titles to their credit, had an ACC-best 39 players on an NFL roster for the opening week of the season.

Miami’s total is second nationally only to Louisiana State (43). The Hurricanes and Florida State (36) are the only two ACC schools among the 10 highest totals in the country.

The SEC, which has the most players in the NFL with 350, has five teams in the top 10 (Auburn is tied for 10th with Ohio State).

The ACC is second among “Power 5” conferences in total players with 269. Of the ACC’s total, there are 37 former players who never competed in a conference game, including former Pittsburgh stars LeSean McCoy and Darrelle Revis, who are featured in the ACC’s commercial touting the conference’s NFL success.

North Carolina leads the in-state contingent with 22 players in the NFL, which ranks fifth in the conference. N.C. State (18), Wake Forest (9) and Duke (8) trail the Tar Heels. Among the 65 schools (including Notre Dame) in a “Power 5” conference, UNC’s total ranks tied for No. 25 nationally.

About the numbers:

All players on the active roster — plus injuries and suspensions — on each team’s official web site for Week 1 of the regular season are counted in the totals. Practice squad players are not.

Players who graduated from one school and transferred to another are counted in both schools (ex. Russell Wilson for N.C. State and Wisconsin). Other transfers are counted only for the player’s last school before the NFL (ex. Cam Newton goes in only Auburn’s total).

The ACC breakdown


Power 5 rank




Florida State












N.C. State






Virginia Tech



Georgia Tech



Boston College






Wake Forest









Miami being ahead of Florida State, which has had 29 draft picks in the last three years alone, is a surprise.

The Hurricanes have not been the same dominant national program since joining the ACC in 2004. There are still four players on Miami’s list who didn’t play in the ACC, but for the most part, the group has been a part of the ACC struggles.

Despite all the talent, the Canes have never won the Coastal Division and have a 41-37 record in ACC play.

But just looking at Miami’s list, you can see it’s a matter of quantity over quality with the recent additions to the NFL. Running back Duke Johnson (Cleveland) and receiver Phillip Dorsett (Indianapolis) have a chance to break out but there’s a lot of more “who?” (LaDarius Gunter, Chase Ford) than “wow!” on Miami’s list.

Indicative of Miami’s ACC problems, the best player in the group is arguably Seattle tight end Jimmy Graham. The Goldsboro native went to Miami on a basketball scholarship and only played college football for one year before turning into an All-Pro tight end.

Virginia Tech (65 ACC wins since 2004) and Georgia Tech (57 conference wins) are the two teams who win the most with the fewest number of NFL players.

By the way, there’s at least one ACC player on every NFL team and the Buffalo Bills have the most (18).

‘Power 5’ conference breakdown












Big Ten












There are five SEC teams with more than 30 players in the NFL and nine with at least 20.

Of note in LSU’s remarkable total is there is only one quarterback (but two punters!), Tennessee Titans backup Zach Mettenberger. The Tigers have two national titles since 2000, but imagine LSU’s talent with N.C. State’s quarterbacks?

The ACC has the second-highest total, but the Pac-12, with two fewer teams than ACC, has a better average per team (20.5 compared to 19.2). The final days of the Pete Carroll era are still propping up Southern California’s total (37) but Oregon (32) is closing in.

The ACC does have bragging rights over the 14-team Big Ten, at least until Urban Meyer’s current wave of talent from Ohio State crashes into the league.

If the Big 12’s total seems low (there are 10 teams in the league) it’s because Kansas (8), Texas Tech (8) and Iowa State (6) aren’t exactly helping. Iowa State, Indiana and Vanderbilt are tied for the fewest former players in the NFL among Power 5 conferences. Every school in the Power 5 has at least one NFL product.

In case you’re curious, Notre Dame ranks 12th on the national list with 30 players in the NFL. Connecticut (from the American Athletic), with 18, has the most of any school outside of a Power 5 conference. Montana, a Division I-AA program with nine former players in the pros, has more NFL products than nine Power 5 teams, including Duke and Syracuse and outpaces Appalachian State (6) and East Carolina (5).




1. LSU



T2. Miami



T2. Florida



T4. Alabama






T6. Florida State



T6. Georgia



8. Oklahoma



9. Oregon



T10. Ohio State

Big Ten


T10. Auburn



Giglio: 919-829-8938, @jwgiglio

By ACC school

Boston College (15)

Anthony Castonzo, T, Indianapolis

Gosder Cherilus, T, Tampa Bay

Kasim Edebali, LB, New Orleans

Andy Gallik, C, Tennessee

*Matt Hasselbeck, QB, Indianapolis

Mark Herzlich, LB, N.Y. Giants

Luke Kuechly, LB, Carolina

Ifeanyi Momah, TE, Arizona

Tyler Murphy, WR, Pittsburgh

Kevin Pierre-Louis, LB, Seattle

Ryan Quigley, P, N.Y. Jets

B.J. Raji, DT, Green Bay

Matt Ryan, QB, Atlanta

Ian Silberman, OL, San Francisco

Andre Williams, RB, N.Y. Giants

Clemson (29)

Dwayne Allen, TE, Indianapolis

Stephone Anthony, LB, New Orleans

Tavaris Barnes, DE, New Orleans

Vic Beasley, DE, Atlanta

Andre Branch, DE, Jacksonville

Jaron Brown, WR, Arizona

Kourtnei Brown, LB, Tampa Bay

Martavis Bryant, WR, Pittsburgh

Chandler Catanzaro, K, Arizona

Kavell Conner, LB, San Diego

Chris Clemons, S, Arizona

Andre Ellington, RB, Arizona

Marcus Gilchrist, S, N.Y. Jets

Malliciah Goodman, DE, Atlanta

Chris Hairston, T, San Diego

DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston

Adam Humphries, WR, Tampa Bay

Grady Jarrett, DT, Atlanta

Jarvis Jenkins, DT, Chicago

Bryon Maxwell, CB, Philadelphia

Bradley Pinion, P, San Francisco

Cody Sensabaugh, CB, Tennessee

Tyler Shatley, G, Jacksonville

C.J. Spiller, RB, New Orleans

Tony Steward, LB, Buffalo

Brandon Thomas, G, San Francisco

Brandon Thompson, DT, Cincinnati

Sammy Watkins, WR, Buffalo

Charlie Whitehurst, QB, Tennessee

Duke (8)

Kenny Anunike, DE, Denver

Ross Cockrell, CB, Pittsburgh

Jamison Crowder, WR, Washington

Cooper Helfet, TE, Seattle

Sean Renfree, QB, Atlanta

Vincent Rey, LB, Cincinnati

Juwan Thompson, RB, Denver

Laken Tomlinson, G, Detroit

FSU (36)

Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Carolina

Nigel Bradham, LB, Buffalo

Anquan Boldin, WR, San Francisco

Terrence Brooks, S, Baltimore

Tank Carradine, DT, San Francisco

Antonio Cromartie, CB, N.Y. Jets

Ronald Darby, CB, Buffalo

Mario Edwards, DE, Oakland

Cameron Erving, C, Cleveland

Andre Fluellen, DT, Buffalo

Devonta Freeman, RB, Atlanta

Graham Gano, K, Carolina

Eddie Goldman, DT, Chicago

Rashad Greene, WR, Jacksonville

Letroy Guion, DT, Green Bay

Bobby Hart, G, N.Y. Giants

Rodney Hudson, C, Oakland

Tre Jackson, G, New England

Sebastian Janikowski, K, Oakland

Timmy Jernigan, DT, Baltimore

Christian Jones, LB, Chicago

Lamarcus Joyner, CB, St. Louis

E.J. Manuel, QB, Buffalo

Xavier Rhodes, CB, Minnesota

Patrick Robinson, CB, San Diego

Garrison Sanborn, LS, Buffalo

Telvin Smith, LB, Jacksonville

Bryan Stork, C, New England

Chris Thompson, RB, Washington

Lawrence Timmons, LB, Pittsburgh

Menelik Watson, T, Oakland

Karlos Williams, RB, Buffalo

P.J. Williams, CB, New Orleans

Vince Williams, LB, Pittsburgh

Bjoern Werner, LB, Indianapolis

Jameis Winston, QB, Tampa Bay

Georgia Tech (15)

Jeremiah Attaochu, LB, San Diego

T.J. Barnes, DT, N.Y. Jets

Morgan Burnett, S, Green Bay

Mario Butler, CB, Buffalo

Andrew Gardner, T, Philadelphia

Stephen Hill, WR, Carolina

Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit

Michael Johnson, DE, Cincinnati

Shaq Mason, G, New England

Derrick Morgan, LB, Tennessee

DeAndre Smelter, WR, San Francisco

Daryl Smith, LB, Baltimore

Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver

Darren Waller, WR, Baltimore

Vance Walker, DE, Denver

Louisville (23)

*Gary Barnidge, TE, Cleveland

*Joshua Bellamy, WR, Chicago

Jamon Brown, T, St. Louis

*Preston Brown, LB, Buffalo

*Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Minnesota

Gerald Christian, TE, Arizona

*Damian Copeland, WR, Jacksonville

*Harry Douglas, WR, Tennessee

*Elvis Dumervil, LB, Baltimore

Charles Gaines, S, Cleveland

*William Gay, CB, Pittsburgh

*Breno Giacomini, T, N.Y. Jets

Lorenzo Mauldin, LB, N.Y. Jets

John Miller, G, Buffalo

Deiontrez Mount, LB, Tennessee

DeVante Parker, WR, Miami

*Senorise Perry, RB, Chicago

*Bilal Powell, RB, N.Y. Jets

*Calvin Pryor, S, N.Y. Jets

Eli Rogers, WR, Pittsburgh

James Sample, S, Jacksonville

*Marcus Smith, LB, Philadelphia

*Eric Wood, C, Buffalo

Miami (39)

Thurston Armbrister, LB, Jacksonville

Ray-Ray Armstrong, LB, Oakland

Allen Bailey, DT, Kansas City

*Jon Beason, LB, N.Y. Giants

Traivs Benjamin, WR, Cleveland

Matt Bosher, P, Atlanta

Calais Campbell, DE, Arizona

Phillip Dorsett, WR, Indianapolis

Jon Feliciano, OL, Oakland

Ereck Flowers, T, N.Y. Giants

Chase Ford, TE, Minnesota

Jason Fox, T, Miami

Orlando Franklin, G, San Diego

Richard Gordon, TE, Kansas City

*Frank Gore, RB, Indianapolis

Jimmy Graham, TE, Seattle

LaDarius Gunter, CB, Green Bay

Leonard Hankerson, WR, Atlanta

Brandon Harris, CB, Tennessee

Seantrel Henderson, T, Buffalo

Devin Hester, WR, Atlanta

Allen Hurns, WR, Jacksonville

Mike James, RB, Tampa Bay

*Andre Johnson, WR, Indianapolis

Duke Johnson, RB, Cleveland

Brandon Linder, G, Jacksonville

Brandon Meriweather, S, N.Y. Giants

Lamar Miller, RB, Miami

Stephen Morris, QB, Philadelphia

Pat O’Donnell, P, Chicago

Greg Olsen, TE, Carolina

Denzel Perryman, LB, San Diego

Antrel Rolle, S, Chicago

Sam Shields, CB, Green Bay

Sean Spence, LB, Pittsburgh

Olivier Vernon, DE, Miami

Clive Walford, TE, Oakland

*Vince Wilfork, DT, Houston

Eric Winston, T, Cincinnati

UNC (22)

Marvin Austin, DT, Denver

Gio Bernard, RB, Cincinnati

Russell Bodine, C, Cincinnati

Tre Boston, S, Carolina

Zach Brown, LB, Tennessee

Bruce Carter, LB, Tampa Bay

Jonathan Cooper, G, Arizona

Quinton Coples, LB, N.Y. Jets

Eric Ebron, TE, Detroit

James Hurst, T, Baltimore

Greg Little, WR, Cincinnati

Kareem Martin, DE, Arizona

Julius Peppers, LB, Green Bay

Jabari Price, CB, Minnesota

Robert Quinn, DE, St. Louis

Garrett Reynolds, T, St. Louis

Da’Norris Searcy, S, Tennessee

Jack Tabb, TE, New Orleans

Brandon Tate, WR, Cincinnati

Cam Thomas, DT, Pittsburgh

Greg Warren, LS, Pittsburgh

Sylvester Williams, DT, Denver

N.C. State (18)

David Amerson, CB, Washington

Tyson Chandler, T, Buffalo

Audie Cole, LB, Minnesota

Jerricho Cotchery, WR, Carolina

Mike Glennon, QB, Tampa Bay

Steven Hauschka, K, Seattle

Nate Irving, LB, Indianapolis

Dontae Johnson, CB, San Francisco

Markus Kuhn, DT, N.Y. Giants

Ted Larsen, OL, Arizona

Manny Lawson, DE, Buffalo

T.Y. McGill, DT, Indianapolis

Philip Rivers, QB, San Diego

J.R. Sweezy, G, Seattle

Stephen Tulloch, LB, Detroit

Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle

Mario Williams, DE, Buffalo

Willie Young, DE, Chicago

Pittsburgh (13)

T.J. Clemmings, OL, Minnesota

*Dorin Dickerson, TE, Tennessee

*Aaron Donald, DT, St. Louis

*LeSean McCoy, RB, Buffalo

*Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona

*Andy Lee, P, Cleveland

*Dion Lewis, RB, New England

Mike McGlynn, G, New Orleans

*Darrelle Revis, CB, N.Y. Jets

Tom Savage, QB, Houston

*Jabaal Sheard, DL, New England

*Devin Street, WR, Dallas

*K’Waun Williams, CB, Cleveland

Syracuse (7)

*Jay Bromley, DT, N.Y. Giants

*Chandler Jones, DE, New England

*Arthur Jones, DT, Indianapolis

Cameron Lynch, LB, St. Louis

*Ryan Nassib, QB, N.Y. Giants

*Justin Pugh, T, N.Y. Giants

*Shamarko Thomas, S, Pittsburgh

Virginia (18)

Oday Aboushi, OL, N.Y. Jets

Branden Albert, T, Miami

Luke Bowanko, C, Jacksonville

Ahmad Brooks, LB, San Francisco

Chris Canty, DE, Baltimore

D’Brickashaw Ferguson, T, N.Y. Jets

Eli Harold, LB, San Francisco

Dontrelle Inman, WR, San Diego

Chris Long, DE, St. Louis

Rodney McLeod, S, St. Louis

Heath Miller, TE, Pittsburgh

Eugene Monroe, T, Baltimore

Moses Morgan, T, Washington

Austin Pasztor, OL, Cleveland

Cedric Peerman, RB, Cincinnati

LaRoy Reynolds, LB, Jacksonville

Matt Schaub, QB, Baltimore

Brent Urban, DE, Baltimore

Virginia Tech (17)

Duane Brown, T, Houston

Kam Chancellor, S, Seattle

Antone Exum, S, Minnesota

Brandon Flowers, CB, San Diego

Kyle Fuller, CB, Chicago

Corey Fuller, WR, Detroit

James Gayle, LB, Washington

*DeAngelo Hall, CB, Washington

Jayron Hosley, CB, N.Y. Giants

Kyshoen Jarrett, S, Washington

Will Montgomery, C, Chicago

Eddie Royal, WR, Chicago

Darryl Tapp, DE, Detroit

Tyrod Taylor, QB, Buffalo

Logan Thomas, QB, Miami

*Michael Vick, QB, Pittsburgh

Chase Williams, LB, Oakland

Wake Forest (9)

Tommy Bohanon, RB, N.Y. Jets

Josh Bush, S, Denver

Micahel Campanaro, WR, Baltimore

Chris Givens, WR, St. Louis

Kevin Johnson, CB, Houston

Calvin Pace, LB, N.Y. Jets

Zach Thompson, LB, Baltimore

Nikita Whitlock, FB, N.Y. Giants

Kyle Wilber, LB, Dallas

Note: *-did not play in the ACC