Last season we saw Kawann Short come up short in his quest for a Super Bowl ring. That made it only 13 of the past 17 years where at least one Purdue player has won a Super Bowl ring. Even in the four years there where a Purdue player has not won a Super Bowl the program has had at least one player in the game. This year that trend could continue. A total of five former Boilers are on NFL playoff rosters heading into Saturday:
Ricardo Allen – Atlanta Falcons – Allen has a by this week as the Falcons won the NFC South and will host a game next week as the No. 2 seed in the NFC. He has moved from corner to safety in the NFL, where he started all 16 games. He had two interceptions and 90 tackles as regular contributor.
Cliff Avril – Seattle Seahawks – Avril already won one ring three seasons ago as part of the Seahawks and he helped then win the NFC West yet again this year. They will host the Detroit Lions, Avril’s old team, Saturday night at 8:15pm. This season Avril had five forced fumbles and 11.5 sacks as a starter in all 16 games.
Anthony Brown – Dallas Cowboys – Brown is a rookie this season and part of the Cowboys’ comeback. They drew a first round bye and will have home field advantage in the NFC playoffs. He was a starter in nine of 16 games and finished with 55 tackles, and interception, and a forced fumble.
Akeem Hunt – Houston Texans – Hunt will play on Saturday afternoon against the Raiders as a reserve running back. He finished this year with 109 carries in eight games and he also worked part-time as a kickoff returner.
Rob Ninkovich – New England Patriots – Ninkovich has long been a staple on the Patriots defense and will be sitting this week as they also have a bye and home field in the AFC playoffs. He got his first Super Bowl ring two years ago with New England.
Brandon Cottom – Seattle Seahawks – Darrell Hazell barely played him, but Cottom has been good enough to be on the practice squad in Seattle for two years as a TE. He has yet to play in an actual regular season game, however.
Gabe Holmes – Oakland Raiders – Holmes is also a regular on the practice squad as a TE and has not played this year. He played as part of the regular roster a little last season.