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September 25, 2022

Locals in the NFL: Tyler Huntley goes off in Ravens’ preseason finale

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Tyler Huntley (2) celebrating his touchdown against the Washington Football Team during the first half of a preseason NFL football game, Saturday, Aug. 28, 2021, in Landover, Md. (Nick Wass, Associated Press)

AROUND THE SHIELD — Former Utah quarterback Tyler Huntley went from undrafted free agent to practice squad — and he’s now on the verge of securing his spot as Lamar Jackson’s full-time backup in Baltimore.

Huntley ran wild during a brilliant display in the Ravens’ 37-3 win over the Washington Football Team to cap the preseason Saturday night, throwing for 285 yards and four touchdowns and running for another score in Baltimore’s win.

And he again earned a ringing endorsement from the Baltimore starter and NFL Most Valuable Player of 2019.

“Glad I’m not playing against him,” Jackson said. “I was cheering like a cheerleader. I just didn’t have pom poms.”

Huntley didn’t start as Jackson made his first appearance of the preseason as the Ravens’ starter. But the Utah graduate entered the game midway through the first quarter and put on a show.

Huntley opened the scoring on a 10-yard run with 1:10 left in the first quarter, and the Ravens were off and running. He then completed touchdown strikes of eight, 25, 20 and 10 yards to Tomlinson, Victor, Proche and Wallace, respectively, to finish with his breakout day.

Yes, it’s only the preseason, but with the NFL’s deadline of Tuesday for team’s to submit their final 53-man roster, Huntley left a lasting impression on the Ravens’ camp.

It’s been a long two years for Huntley, the second-year pro out of Florida’s Hallandale High who made the most of each opportunity, including the most recent.

“It just feels good,” Huntley said. “The long camp; I think we’ve been in camp for like six weeks. It felt good to end on a good note and get ready for the regular season. It gave us a good amount of momentum to get ready for the Raiders on Monday night.”

Huntley threw off play-action, in the pocket, and commanded the offense like a savvy vet, completing 24-of-33 passes and finishing with a game-high quarterback rating of 138.3. He looked like a seasoned pro in his second season in John Harbaugh’s offense.

“I feel like I’m comfortable in it, just because it’s good to get in the game — more than just practice,” Huntley said. “Getting those reps in the game gives you the comfort that you need.”

“I still had some mess-ups,” he added. “I feel like I could’ve played way better in these last few games. But just stacking was the main goal; keep stacking and getting better. We’ve got a lot of work to go.”

The Ravens open the 2021 NFL regular season on Monday Night Football against the Las Vegas Raiders. Before then — by Tuesday — they’ll have to submit their final round of cuts to establish the 53-man roster by Tuesday.

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, right, gives a thumbs up next to backup Tyler Huntley after an NFL football practice, Monday, Aug. 9, 2021 in Owings Mills, Md.
Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, right, gives a thumbs up next to backup Tyler Huntley after an NFL football practice, Monday, Aug. 9, 2021 in Owings Mills, Md. (Photo: Gail Burton, Associated Press)

And Huntley figures to be part of it.

Former BYU running back Ty’Son Williams came off the bench and ran for 42 yards on four carries for the Ravens, and former Utah State wide receiver Siaosi Mariner played eight snaps on offense and seven on special teams for Baltimore.

Former BYU wide receiver Dax Milne caught three passes for 36 yards for Washington, and also fielded one punt. The seventh-round pick and former walk-on from Bingham High played 42 snaps on offense and two on special teams.

Former Utah linebacker Jared Norris had six tackles and a tackle for loss in 42 defensive snaps for the Football Team. Former Utah State and Jordan High offensive lineman Tyler Larsen started at center and played 28 snaps on offense.

Here’s how other former local high school and college football standouts fared in the final tune-up of the NFL preseason.

Saints-Cardinals canceled

The Saints’ preseason finale with Arizona was canceled due to inclement weather caused by Hurricane Ida in the New Orleans area.

But Saints head coach Sean Payton will name Jameis Winston as the starting quarterback over former BYU star Taysom Hill, according to the Associated Press.

The decision, which was first reported by ESPN, means Winston is set to start his first regular season game since the end of the 2019 season with Tampa Bay. Winston returned to New Orleans on a one-year contract worth a base of $5 million plus incentives worth an additional $7 million and an opportunity to compete for an open starting job.

Buffalo 19, Green Bay 0

Utah all-time leading rusher Zack Moss ran for 10 yards on four carries as the Bills shutout the Packers in their preseason finale.

Bingham High product Star Lotulelei started at defensive tackle and made one stop in 12 snaps for the Bills, who did not activate former Weber State defensive back Taron Johnson. American Fork grad Jordan Devey played 17 snaps at center for Buffalo.

Utah State’s Jordan Lovestarted at quarterback for the Packers and completed 12-of-18 passes for 149 yards with a sack taken and an interception in 38 snaps.

Former BYU defensive end Bronson Kaufusi started at tight end and played 26 snaps for Green Bay, and Utah State’s Tipa Galeai played 29 snaps at defensive end.

Jacksonville 34, Dallas 14

Former Bingham High defensive end Jay Tufele made one tackle in the Jaguars’ win over the Cowboys.

Fellow Bingham High product Dalton Schultz and Herriman grad Francis Bernard, who played at Stanford and Utah respectively, did not play in the Cowboys’ final preseason game.

Brighton alum Simi Fehoko started and caught three passes for 21 yards, and former Utah defensive end Bradlee Anae started and made two tackles on defense and another on special teams.

Seattle 27, LA Chargers 0

Former Brighton High and Utah linebacker Cody Barton made five tackles, including a 12-yard sack, to go along with a quarterback hurry and a forced fumble in the Seahawks’ win over the Chargers.

Fellow Utah alum Marquise Blair made two tackles, recovered a fumble and returned it 17 yards for Seattle, and Highland alum Bryan Mone added a tackle.

Utah State’s Bobby Wagner did not play in the preseason finale for the Seahawks, nor did BYU alum Michael Davis for the Chargers.

Former Orem High safety Alohi Gilman made four tackles for Los Angeles, and Utah State alum Kyler Fackrell played five snaps on special teams.

Denver 17, LA Rams 12

Former Utah wide receiver Tim Patrick was targeted twice but did not record a catch in the Broncos’ win over the Rams.

Westlake High alum and Utah tackle Garret Bolles played 10 snaps on offense and one on special teams for Denver.

Former Weber State defensive end Jonah Williams made five tackles for the Rams, who got two tackles from former Utah safety Terrell Burgess and another from former BYU safety Troy Warner.

Orem High product Matt Gay, who played soccer at UVU and kicked for Utah, made field goals of 23, 54, 30 and 23 yards to account for all of the Rams’ scoring.

Tampa Bay 23, Houston 16

Former BYU cornerback Chris Wilcox made two tackles in the Buccaneers’ win over the Texans.

Chicago 27, Tennessee 24

Former Utah State long snapper Patrick Scales played nine special teams snaps in the Bears’ win over the Titans.

Former BYU lineman Chandon Herring rotated in on 52 snaps at guard and four more on special teams for Tennessee.

Former Utah cornerback Jaylon Johnson and BYU nose tackle Khyiris Tonga did not play in the Bears’ preseason finale.

Kansas City 28, Minnesota 25

Layton High product Marcus Kemp caught three passes for 41 yards, including a 23-yard touchdown from Shane Buechele in the Chiefs’ win over the Vikings.

Former BYU safety Daniel Sorensen started and made one tackle in 12 snaps for the Chiefs, who got 11 yards on three carries (22 offensive snaps) from Utah State running back Darwin Thompson. Former BYU safety Zayne Anderson made one tackle in 29 defensive snaps for Kansas City.

Former Utah State linebacker Nick Vigil started and played 21 defensive snaps, making three tackles, for the Vikings.

NY Jets 31, Philadelphia 31

Former BYU and Corner Canyon quarterbackZach Wilson did not play in the Jets’ preseason finale, a tie with the Eagles.

Former Utah defensive back Javelin Guidry played 29 snaps on defense and six on special teams for the Jets.

Former Weber State lineman Sua Opeta, who prepped at Stansbury, started and played 29 snaps at right guard for the Eagles, while also rotating in for five snaps on special teams.

Carolina 34, Pittsburgh 9

Former Bountiful High and BYU standout Brady Christensen played 20 snaps at tackle and seven more on special teams in the Panthers’ win over the Steelers.

Former SUU safety Miles Killebrew started at linebacker and made a team-high six tackles for the Steelers in 41 defensive snaps.

Indianapolis 27, Detroit 17

Former BYU linebacker Isaiah Kaufusi started and collected a team-high nine tackles and a pass breakup while playing 51 defensive snaps of the Colts’ win over the Lions.

Weber State’s Andrew Vollert played one snap at tight end and added six on special teams for the Colts.

Former Layton High safety Julian Blackmon did not play in the Colts’ preseason finale. Former Utah lineman Sam Tevi played 25 snaps at tackle before leaving the game with an ACL and MCL injury that will keep him out for the season, Colts officials later announced.

Former Desert Hills standout Penei Sewell played 17 snaps at tackle for the Lions, and Utah defensive tackle John Penisini made five appearances for Detroit. Former Utah tackle Darrin Paulo played 28 snaps on offense and three on special teams for the Lions.

BYU all-time leading rusher Jamaal Williams did not play for the Lions.

Miami 29, Cincinnati 26

Reid Sinnett’s Hail Mary touchdown pass 34 yards to Chris Myarick with 1:21 remaining helped the Dolphins escape the Bengals in their preseason finale.

Former Utah cornerback Eric Rowe did not play for the Dolphins.

Former Utah State cornerback Jalen Davis made two tackles, and Timpview product Xavier Su’a-Filo started at right guard for the Bengals.

San Francisco 34, Las Vegas 10

Former BYU linebacker Fred Warner started and played sparingly as the 49ers wrapped up the preseason with a win over the Raiders.

Recently re-signed off waivers, former BYU defensive end Corbin Kaufusi rotated on the offensive line for San Francisco, and former Utah punter Mitch Wishnowsky averaged 61.8 yards over four punts, including a 75-yarder with three punts inside the 20.

Former Utah State cornerback Nevin Lawson posted six tackles and two pass breakups, and fellow Aggie alum Dallin Leavitt added four tackles for Las Vegas.

Former Utah lineman Jeremiah Poutasi started at right guard for the Raiders. Former BYU tight end Matt Bushman caught one pass for 10 yards for the Raiders.

New England 22, NY Giants 20

Former BYU linebacker Harvey Langi racked up a game-high seven tackles to lift the Patriots past the Giants.

Langi stuffed the stat sheet again a week after posting five tackles, a sack, an interception and a pass breakup against the Eagles. The Bingham High graduate has put himself in position to make the 53-man roster in New England just two years removed from a devastating car accident that nearly killed him and his wife Cassidy outside Boston.

Fellow BYU linebacker grad Kyle Van Noy played sparingly off the bench for the Patriots.

Former Utah running back Devontae Booker ran for 14 yards on seven carries for the Giants, while running behind an offensive line that included Brighton High product Jackson Barton at tackle.

Cleveland 19, Atlanta 10

Former Utah State wide receiver JoJo Natson returned two kicks and was targeted twice in the Browns’ win over the Falcons.

Former Utah cornerback Brian Allen made three tackles on defense and assisted on another on special teams for the Browns, who got one tackle from former Salem Hills quarterback Porter Gustin.

Former BYU linebacker Sione Takitaki did not play for Cleveland.

Former BYU defensive tackle Zac Dawe, a Pleasant Grove alumnus, made one tackle and added a quarterback hurry in the Falcons’ loss.

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