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There’s almost enough Ohio State alumni in the NFL to field an entire team

NFL training camp is underway, and we’re just two Buckeyes away from being able to make an all-OSU team.

NFL: New York Jets at Oakland Raiders Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

It is here! Actual football will be played tonight with the kick-off of the 2018 NFL preseason with the Baltimore Ravens vs. Chicago Bears Hall of Fame game at 8 p.m. ET in Canton, Ohio.

With the rest of the preseason just over a week away, players are giving their all at training camp and looking to stay healthy while also practicing aggressively enough to snag one of the final roster spots with their respective teams.

Ohio State alumni currently make up 51 roster spots — including Ryan Shazier, who will miss this season due to his back injury — on 27 of 32 NFL teams. That’s a lot of Buckeyes! In fact, it’s only two-players shy of being able to field an entire NFL roster on a single team, counting specialists.

Buckeyes in the NFL — Training Camp edition

Eli Apple New York Giants Cornerback
Jerome Baker Miami Dolphins Linebacker
J.T. Barrett New Orleans Saints (UDFA) Quarterback
Marcus Baugh Oakland Raiders (UDFA) Tight End
Vonn Bell New Orleans Saints Safety
Michael Bennett Jacksonville Jaguars Defensive Tackle
Joey Bosa Los Angeles Chargers Defensive End
Corey Brown Denver Broncos Wide Receiver
Noah Brown Dallas Cowboys Wide Receiver
Kurt Coleman Carolina Panthers Defensive Back
Gareon Conley Oakland Raiders Cornerback
Taylor Decker Detroit Lions Offensive Tackle
Nate Ebner New England Patriots Defensive Back
Pat Elflein Minnesota Vikings Offensive Lineman
Ezekiel Elliott Dallas Cowboys Running Back
Ted Ginn Jr. New Orleans Saints Wide Receiver
Doran Grant Chicago Bears Cornerback
Jeff Heuerman Denver Broncos Tight End
Cameron Heyward Pittsburgh Steelers Defensive End
Jalyn Holmes Minnesota Vikings Defensive End
Malik Hooker Indianapolis Colts Safety
Sam Hubbard Cincinnati Bengals Defensive End
Carlos Hyde San Francisco 49ers Running Back
Malcolm Jenkins Philadelphia Eagles Free Safety
Cameron Johnston Philadelphia Eagles Punter
Cardale Jones Los Angeles Chargers Quarterback
Jamarco Jones Seattle Seahawks Offensive Lineman
Marshon Lattimore New Orleans Saints Cornerback
Darron Lee New York Jets Linebacker
Tyquan Lewis Indianapolis Colts Defensive Lineman
Corey Linsley Green Bay Packers Center
Raekwon McMillan Miami Dolphins Linebacker
Jake McQuaide Los Angeles Rams Long Snapper
Braxton Miller Houston Texans Wide Receiver
Andrew Norwell Jacksonville Jaguars Offensive Guard
Tyvis Powell San Francisco 49ers Safety
DeVier Posey Baltimore Ravens Wide Receiver
Billy Price Cincinnati Bengals Offensive Lineman
Terrelle Pryor Sr. New York Jets Wide Receiver
Bradley Roby Denver Broncos Cornerback
Curtis Samuel Carolina Panthers Wide Receiver
John Simon Indianapolis Colts Linebacker
Rod Smith Dallas Cowboys Running Back
Tracy Sprinkle Carolina Panthers (UDFA) Defensive Lineman
Michael Thomas New Orleans Saints Wide Receiver
Nick Vannett Seattle Seahawks Tight End
Denzel Ward Cleveland Browns Cornerback
Adolphus Washington Buffalo Bills Defensive Tackle
Damon Webb Tennessee Titans (UDFA) Safety
Chris Worley Cincinnati Bengals (UDFA) Linebacker

Sure, these guys will have to survive the first and second round of cuts before team’s finalize their 53-man rosters, but it’s still pretty impressive that the Buckeye contingent in the NFL is stronger than ever.

Here’s a look at what’s been happening since the onset of training camp with some of your favorite Buckeyes:

Former Ohio State linebacker John Simon has been moved to DE by the Colts’ coaches, but so far seems to be impressing at the position.

“Notably, John Simon has made a strong impression in camp, which is huge for him, since the switch to the defensive end role was one many thought he might struggle with. It will be interesting to see if his success holds up when the starting tackles return.”

Chargers’ DE Joey Bosa doesn’t think he’s anywhere near hitting his ceiling yet.

“I think there’s so much I have to work on that I have an idea in my head of what I want things to look like and how I want to be as a player, and I’m not anywhere near those things, but I know I’m making the right steps in that direction,” Bosa said Sunday.

The Jets could finally be a team to watch in 2018 and Buckeye LB Darron Lee is one of the talented pieces they have to build around.

“In terms of pure physical playing speed, third-year pro Darron Lee has assumed the great Ryan Shazier’s title of Football’s Fastest Linebacker.”

Recently retired

It’s not often that we write articles about players retiring who have only been in the league a three or four years, but as head injuries — and awareness of the medical concerns — continue to grow in numbers, more players are looking to hang up their cleats before it’s too late.

This is the case with former OSU and NFL linebacker Joshua Perry announced his retirement earlier in the week. It’s a big loss for the football community, but the Buckeye has big plans for how he’s going to spend his time post-NFL.

Similarly, offensive lineman Jack Mewhort announced his retirement from the NFL after spending four years with the Colts. He bounced from injury to injury over the past few years, and specifically had some lingering issues with his knees.

The Colts GM Chris Ballard had nothing but praise for the Buckeye.

“He fought through injuries and played through pain,” Ballard said in a release. “Jack is a selfless player who always carried a team-first mentality. He is revered among his coaches, teammates and staff and his leadership will be missed in the locker room. We’re appreciative of Jack’s dedication to the Colts and we wish him the best moving forward.”

Working on a comeback

Panthers’ H-back Curtis Samuel is still rehabbing the ankle injury sustained last year and started training camp on the PUP list. But now, he’s back and doing things like this:

Patriots’ special teams maven, Nate Ebner, is similarly still recovering from a season-ending knee injury and started training camp on the PUP list.

“While there is still a chance he starts camp on the physically unable to perform list, he would certainly come off it at some point prior or during the season.”

Already fighting injuries

Buckeye wide receiver Corey “Philly” Brown was signed by the Denver Broncos last week — after spending the offseason as a free agent — but was quickly sidelined with, what seems like, a freak head injury.

Corey Brown had an accident in the weight room,” Joseph said on Sunday. “He bumped his head—simple as that.”

Just weeks after earning some reps with the first team during OTAs, second-year WR Noah Brown sat out of the Cowboys’ practice on Saturday with a hamstring injury.

Brown missed Friday’s session as well. With a penetrable depth chart at wide receiver, the 2017 seventh-round pick has a great opportunity to make the Cowboys’ roster. Injuries will not help his cause, however, so he will be hoping to get back on the field as soon as possible in order to compete for a 53-man roster spot.”

After missing out on much of his rookie season with the Raiders, CB Gareon Conley is once again on the sideline, this time with a hip injury.

“He’s got a little hip strain there,” said Guenther. “It’s unfortunate. He made a good play on a ball in a one-on-one drill and just bumped his hip a little bit. He won’t be out too long.”