The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

College Sports

September 8, 2013

Several ex-Mountaineers to make NFL debuts

Football is back. America can rejoice. College football is in it's second week and the NFL got underway on Thursday night with a virtuoso performance from Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos.

Today marks the first full slate of NFL games since December 30th of last year. It also marks the Regular Season debuts of Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey and Geno Smith. Bruce Irvin will sit out the Seahawks first four games as he serves his suspension.

Here is the rundown of what and when to watch your favorite Mountaineers in action for Week 1.

Today

Buccaneers at Jets, 1 p.m.

Geno Smith makes his debut as the Jets' signal caller. He is only the third quarterback drafted in the second round of the NFL Draft to start Week 1 as a rookie since the NFL merger. The others being Quincy Carter and Andy Dalton. Ellis Lankster is listed as “Probable” with foot and hamstring injuries. Keith Tandy will back up at safety for the Bucs and be the nickel corner.

Bengals at Bears, 1 p.m.

Adam Pacman Jones will return punts for the Bengals and back up at corner.

Raiders at Colts, 1 p.m.

Pat McAfee and his Boomstick will look to improve upon his franchise best punting numbers from last season.

Chiefs at Jaguars, 1 p.m.

J.T. Thomas will suit up for the first time in a Jaguars uniform after getting claimed off waivers last week. He previously played for new Jaguars defensive coordinator Bob Babich with the Bears, so he will be familiar with the defense and special teams.

Titans at Steelers, 1 p.m.

Will Johnson missed some practice time for the Steelers this week with a hamstring injury and is listed as "Probable". Terence Garvin could play in his first regular season game for the Steelers after a topsy-turvy week. Darius Reynaud returns as the kick and punt returner for the second season with the Titans.

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