School-Best Three Ferris State Football Alums Named To NFL Opening Day Rosters

School-Best Three Ferris State Football Alums Named To NFL Opening Day Rosters

Big Rapids, Mich. - A school-record three Ferris State University football alums have made active National Football League (NFL) opening day rosters as announced by their respective league organizations this weekeend.

FSU's Malik Taylor, a wide receiver, was tabbed to the 53-man active roster by the Green Bay Packers after spending last season on the club's practice squad.

Meanwhile, cornerback Tavierre Thomas made by Cleveland Browns' active roster for the third consecutive season while a fellow third-year pro in defensive end Zach Sieler was named to the Miami Dolphins opening day roster.

The three alums named to the active roster following preseason camp are the most in a single-year on an opening day list in school history.

Taylor and the Packers will open the week one slate on Sunday (Sept. 13) at Minnesota while Thomas and the Browns take on Baltimore on the road the same afternoon. Sieler will make his season debut with the Dolphins at New England on Sunday.

Three other Bulldog alums also took part in NFL camps and could still be called back or selected for practice squads in Brady Sheldon (Cincinnati), Justin Zimmer (Buffalo) and Austin Edwards (Atlanta). In addition, former Harlon Hill winner Jason Vander Laan (New Orleans) decided to opt out of the NFL this season under the COVID-19 guidelines. Former wide receiver Jake Lampman also had an NFL tryout with the New Orleans Saints in August after formerly playing for the organization.

The seven Bulldog alums mentioned who were with NFL organizations this offseason were the most of any NCAA Division II institution in the country. A total of 11 different former Bulldogs have been invited to NFL Preseason Camps over the past four years.

Over the past four seasons, Sieler, Vander Laan, Sheldon, Zimmer, Thomas and Lampman have all seen NFL regular-season action after Lampman became the first former Bulldog to do so in 13 years back in 2016. 

Last fall, during the 2019 season, five Bulldog alums were signed to the active roster at one point and played in at least one regular-season game.

The Bulldog alums in the NFL have all played key roles in helping FSU to a nation-best 72-9 overall record over the past six seasons. The Bulldogs have claimed four conference championships, posted four unbeaten regular-seasons, captured three regional titles and reached the national quarterfinals four times along with the national semifinals three times and the national championship game once during the stretch.