PRINCETON, N.J. -- The 2014-15 National Football League season starts this week with a strong Ivy League presence as 12 former players grace active rosters and four others dot practice squads.
The 12 former Ivies across the NFL's 53-man rosters are the most for the Ivy League on opening day since 2006 when 13 former standouts held active roster spots to open that season.
Harvard's Ryan Fitzpatrick leads the conference's contingent of NFL veterans, entering his 10th season overall and his first with the Houston Texans. Cornell's Kevin Boothe embarks on his ninth season back with his original team, the Oakland Raiders, after spending seven seasons and winning two Super Bowls with the New York Giants. His former teammate, Brown's Zak DeOssie, heads into his eighth season, all with the Giants.
Two former Ivies earned spots on active squads for the first time. Columbia's Jeff Adams joins the Texans after spending time over the last two years on practice squads with the Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins and Tennessee Titans. Princeton's Caraun Reid looks to contribute in his first season with the Detroit Lions after being drafted in the seventh round this past May.
Former Ivy Leaguers released in training camps were Harvard's Jacob Dombrowski (by the Buffalo Bills), Kevin Murphy (by the Minnesota Vikings) and Tyler Ott (by the New England Patriots) and Penn's Greg Van Roten (by the Seattle Seahawks).
IVY LEAGUERS ON 2014 NFL OPENING WEEKEND ROSTERS
Jeff Adams, Columbia - Houston Texans (1st Season)
Kevin Boothe, Cornell - Oakland Raiders (9th Season)
Desmond Bryant, Harvard - Cleveland Browns (6th Season)
Mike Catapano, Princeton - Kansas City Chiefs (2nd Season)*
Zak DeOssie, Brown - New York Giants (8th Season)
James Develin, Brown - New England Patriots (5th Season)
Ryan Fitzpatrick, Harvard - Houston Texans (10th Season)
Kyle Juszczyk, Harvard - Baltimore Ravens (2nd Season)
Josh Martin, Columbia - Kansas City Chiefs (2nd Season)
Caraun Reid, Princeton - Detroit Lions (1st Season)
JC Tretter, Cornell - Green Bay Packers (2nd Season)
Bryan Walters, Cornell - Seattle Seahawks (5th Season)
Cameron Brate, Harvard - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1st Season)
Brandon Copeland, Penn - Baltimore Ravens (2nd Season)
Jeff Mathews, Cornell - Indianapolis Colts (1st Season)
Nnamdi Obokwelu, Harvard - Indianapolis Colts (1st Season)
*On Active/Non-Football Injury List