Former Arkansas Players Fill NFL Rosters

FAYETTEVILLE --Believe it or not, as of Aug. 30, there were 26 former Arkansas players on NFL rosters.

As the season begins in earnest today -- because of Hurricane Ivan, Tennessee played at Miami on Saturday -- there are 13 former Razorbacks listed on NFL rosters.

Of course, the two biggest names among the Razorbacks rookie crop are Shawn Andrews, the 6-foot-4, 340-pound All-American offensive tackle, and hiccup quick cornerback Ahmad "Batman" Carroll, a 5-10, 185-pounder.

Andrews is the starting right guard for the Philadelphia Eagles; Carroll is a backup left cornerback with the Green Bay Packers.

Andrews and Carroll left after their junior years and both were first-round picks in the 2004 NFL Draft on April 24.

"This just gives me a chance to take care of my family, my mom, my brothers," said Andrews on the day of the draft. "It feels good to take care of my family."

Andrews and Caroll shared the limelight -- because they were underclassmen -- with fullback Mark Pierce, Jason Peters and Lawrence Richardson. Pierce never made it and Peters and Richardson both were released by the Buffalo Bills on Aug. 31.

Perhaps one surprise in the draft last year was former Razorbacks linebacker Caleb Miller. Miller (6-3, 225) was picked in third round by the Cincinnati Bengals.

"It feels good, real good," Miller said. "It's a little surprising. I was just surprised from the standpoint where teams were viewing me."

Miller has impressed Bengals linebacker coach Ricky Hunley.

Said Hunley: "We're looking for guys who make plays and are productive, and Caleb is someone who gets in there and mixes it up. We like the way he plays on the line.

"He's real active."

When the Bengals open the season today on the road against the New York Jets, he'll be the backup middle linebacker behind Nate Webster.

Andrews, of course, has cracked the starting lineup with the Eagles. Philadelphia opens the season at home against the New York Giants.

"A lot of people said I wouldn't make it," Andrews said on draft day. "I know a lot of people back home (Camden) right now because I am where I am right now."

Carroll is backing up Michael Hawthorne in the Green Bay secondary. The Packers open their season at Carolina on Monday night.

"I was just happy to be drafted by the great team and to play in Lambeau Field for the Cheeseheads," Carroll said. "It's going to be a wonderful experience."

Other rookies finding their way on NFL rosters were former Razorbacks linebacker Tony Bua (Miami) and wide receiver Richard Smith (Kansas City).

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