2014 NFL season
The 2014 NFL season was the 95th season in the history of the National Football League. The season began on Thursday, September 4, 2014, with the annual kickoff game featuring the defending Super Bowl XLVIII champion Seattle Seahawks hosting the Green Bay Packers, which resulted with the Seahawks winning, 36-16; the season concluded with Super Bowl XLIX, the league's championship game, on Sunday, February 1, 2015, at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, with the New England Patriots defeating the Seattle Seahawks, 28–24. The 2014 league year began at 4 pm EST on March 11, which marked the start of the league's free agency period; the per-team salary cap was set at a $10 million increase from the previous year. The so-called "legal tampering" period during which time agents representing prospective unrestricted free agent players were allowed to have contact with team representatives with the purpose of determining a player's market value and to begin contract negotiations, began at noon on March 8.
A total of 471 players were eligible for some form of free agency at the beginning of the free agency period. In addition, a number of paid players were released after the start of the league year to allow their teams to regain space under the salary cap. Among the high-profile players who changed teams via free agency were cornerbacks Darrelle Revis, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Aqib Talib and Alterraun Verner. Four players were assigned the non-exclusive franchise tag by their teams, which ensured that the team would receive compensation were the player to sign a contract with another team; these players were defensive end Greg Hardy, tight end Jimmy Graham, placekicker Nick Folk and linebacker Brian Orakpo. Two other teams used the transition tag, which offers the player's current team a chance to match offers from other franchises and guarantees draft pick compensation if a tagged player signs elsewhere. Players given the transition tag were Jason Worilds and Alex Mack. Mack signed a five-year, $42 million offer sheet with the Jacksonville Jaguars which included $26 million in guaranteed money and a player option to void the contract after two seasons.
The Browns retained Mack who became the league's highest paid center. One restricted free agent switched teams in 2014: wide receiver Andrew Hawkins of the Bengals was signed by the Browns. Restricted free agents are players with three or fewer seasons in the league whose contracts have expired. Teams may tender contract offers which allow them to match offers from other teams and may trigger draft pick compensation to be received from the signing team. Hawkins was tendered at the minimum level, which means the Bengals would not receive any draft compensation; the Browns signed him to a $13.6 million, four-year offer. Saints safety Rafael Bush signed an offer from the Falcons, but the Saints retained Bush by matching the offer; the 2014 NFL Draft was held May 8 -- 2014, in New York City. The draft process began with the NFL Scouting Combine, where draft-eligible players were evaluated by team personnel, held in Indianapolis on February 19–25; the draft included a record number of 98 non-seniors.
The event was delayed two weeks compared to its traditional position on the NFL calendar in late April due to a scheduling conflict at Radio City Music Hall, the draft venue since 2006. In the draft, the Houston Texans made University of South Carolina defensive end, now outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney the first overall selection. There was discussion leading up to the draft as to the future of the event in New York City, where it had been held since 1965. Given the increased interest in the draft over the past decade, there was a belief that the event may have outgrown Radio City Music Hall, the venue for the past nine drafts; the possibility of extending the draft to four days was being discussed. On October 2, 2014, Auditorium Theatre in Chicago was announced as the official site for the following year's draft. Training camps for the 2014 season were held in late July through August. Teams may start training camp no earlier than 15 days before the team's first scheduled preseason game.
Prior to the start of the regular season, each team played four preseason exhibition games. The preseason schedule got underway with the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game on Sunday evening, August 3; the Hall of Fame game is a traditional part of the annual Pro Football Hall of Fame induction weekend celebrating new Hall of Fame members. It was played at Fawcett Stadium, located adjacent to the Hall of Fame building in Canton, Ohio; the game, televised in the U. S. on NBC, featured the New York Giants and Buffalo Bills, with the Giants winning 17–13. Continuing the recent trend of scheduling teams that are associated with former players be
African Americans are an ethnic group of Americans with total or partial ancestry from any of the black racial groups of Africa. The term refers to descendants of enslaved black people who are from the United States. Black and African Americans constitute the third largest racial and ethnic group in the United States. Most African Americans are descendants of enslaved peoples within the boundaries of the present United States. On average, African Americans are of West/Central African and European descent, some have Native American ancestry. According to U. S. Census Bureau data, African immigrants do not self-identify as African American; the overwhelming majority of African immigrants identify instead with their own respective ethnicities. Immigrants from some Caribbean, Central American and South American nations and their descendants may or may not self-identify with the term. African-American history starts in the 16th century, with peoples from West Africa forcibly taken as slaves to Spanish America, in the 17th century with West African slaves taken to English colonies in North America.
After the founding of the United States, black people continued to be enslaved, the last four million black slaves were only liberated after the Civil War in 1865. Due to notions of white supremacy, they were treated as second-class citizens; the Naturalization Act of 1790 limited U. S. citizenship to whites only, only white men of property could vote. These circumstances were changed by Reconstruction, development of the black community, participation in the great military conflicts of the United States, the elimination of racial segregation, the civil rights movement which sought political and social freedom. In 2008, Barack Obama became the first African American to be elected President of the United States; the first African slaves arrived via Santo Domingo to the San Miguel de Gualdape colony, founded by Spanish explorer Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón in 1526. The marriage between Luisa de Abrego, a free black domestic servant from Seville and Miguel Rodríguez, a white Segovian conquistador in 1565 in St. Augustine, is the first known and recorded Christian marriage anywhere in what is now the continental United States.
The ill-fated colony was immediately disrupted by a fight over leadership, during which the slaves revolted and fled the colony to seek refuge among local Native Americans. De Ayllón and many of the colonists died shortly afterwards of an epidemic and the colony was abandoned; the settlers and the slaves who had not escaped returned to Haiti, whence. The first recorded Africans in British North America were "20 and odd negroes" who came to Jamestown, Virginia via Cape Comfort in August 1619 as indentured servants; as English settlers died from harsh conditions and more Africans were brought to work as laborers. An indentured servant would work for several years without wages; the status of indentured servants in early Virginia and Maryland was similar to slavery. Servants could be bought, sold, or leased and they could be physically beaten for disobedience or running away. Unlike slaves, they were freed after their term of service expired or was bought out, their children did not inherit their status, on their release from contract they received "a year's provision of corn, double apparel, tools necessary", a small cash payment called "freedom dues".
Africans could raise crops and cattle to purchase their freedom. They raised families, married other Africans and sometimes intermarried with Native Americans or English settlers. By the 1640s and 1650s, several African families owned farms around Jamestown and some became wealthy by colonial standards and purchased indentured servants of their own. In 1640, the Virginia General Court recorded the earliest documentation of lifetime slavery when they sentenced John Punch, a Negro, to lifetime servitude under his master Hugh Gwyn for running away. In the Spanish Florida some Spanish married or had unions with Pensacola, Creek or African women, both slave and free, their descendants created a mixed-race population of mestizos and mulattos; the Spanish encouraged slaves from the southern British colonies to come to Florida as a refuge, promising freedom in exchange for conversion to Catholicism. King Charles II of Spain issued a royal proclamation freeing all slaves who fled to Spanish Florida and accepted conversion and baptism.
Most went to the area around St. Augustine, but escaped slaves reached Pensacola. St. Augustine had mustered an all-black militia unit defending Spain as early as 1683. One of the Dutch African arrivals, Anthony Johnson, would own one of the first black "slaves", John Casor, resulting from the court ruling of a civil case; the popular conception of a race-based slave system did not develop until the 18th century. The Dutch West India Company introduced slavery in 1625 with the importation of eleven black slaves into New Amsterdam. All the colony's slaves, were freed upon its surrender to the British. Massachusetts was the first British colony to recognize slavery in 1641. In 1662, Virginia passed a law that children of enslaved women took the status of the mother, rather than that of the father, as under English common law; this principle was called partus sequitur ventrum. By an act of 1699, the colony ordered all free blacks deported defining as slaves all people of African descent who remained in the c
Joique Dewayne Bell Jr. is an American football running back, a free agent. He played college football at Wayne State. Bell was signed by the Buffalo Bills as an undrafted free agent in 2010, he has been a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, Detroit Lions, Chicago Bears. As a senior at Wayne State, Bell was the winner of the Harlon Hill Trophy, awarded to the Division II player of the year, after he rushed for 2,084 yards and 29 touchdowns in the 2009 season. After going undrafted in the 2010 NFL Draft, Bell signed with the Buffalo Bills on April 29, 2010. On September 4, 2010, he was released by the Bills during final team cuts. Bell was signed to the Bills' practice squad on the following day. On September 21, 2010, the Philadelphia Eagles signed Bell off the Bills' practice squad, he was released by the Eagles on November 10, 2010. Bell was claimed off waivers by the Indianapolis Colts on November 11, 2010. On December 15, 2010, Bell was released by the team.
One day after his release from the Colts, on December 16, 2010, Bell was signed to the Eagles' practice squad. Bell was signed off the Eagles' practice squad by the New Orleans Saints on January 5, 2011 before the playoffs began, he was released by the team on September 20, 2011, re-signed to the Saints' practice squad the following day. On December 26, 2011, Bell was signed by the Detroit Lions, he played his first game with the Lions on September 9, 2012, appeared in all 16 games of the 2012 season, compiling 414 rushing yards on 82 carries with three rushing touchdowns. He hauled in 52 receptions for 485 yards, he was re-signed by the Lions in April 2013. He again played all 16 games for Detroit, finishing with 650 rushing yards and eight rushing touchdowns. Bell caught 53 passes for 547 yards, as he and teammate Reggie Bush, who had 54 receptions for 506 yards, became the first running back duo in NFL history to both top 500 rushing yards and 500 receiving yards in a season. On March 11, 2014, he signed a two-year, $7 million contract extension with $4.3 million in guaranteed money.
Combined with the second round tender he signed worth $2.187 million, he was under contract for three years and $9.3 million overall. On February 16, 2016, Bell was released by the Detroit Lions. On September 27, 2016, Bell was signed by the Chicago Bears. On October 24, he was released by the Bears; the Detroit Lions re-signed Bell on December 6, 2016, after starting running back Ameer Abdullah suffered a fractured foot. Bell was born in Benton Harbor and majored in criminal justice at Wayne State. While a student at Wayne State, Bell worked as a security guard at the Detroit Lions' training camp. Detroit Lions bio Buffalo Bills bio Wayne State Warriors football bio
2014 Dallas Cowboys season
The 2014 Dallas Cowboys season was the franchise's 55th season in the National Football League, the sixth playing their home games at AT&T Stadium and the fourth full season under head coach Jason Garrett. NotesThe Cowboys traded their original second-round and third-round selections to the Washington Redskins in exchange for a second-round selection; the Cowboys traded tight end Dante Rosario to the Chicago Bears for a seventh-round selection. The Cowboys traded their fifth-round and seventh-round selections to the Detroit Lions in exchange for a fifth-round selection; the Cowboys traded their sixth-round selection to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for linebacker Edgar Jones and a seventh-round selection. After the departure of long time Cowboy favorites DE/LB DeMarcus Ware and DT Jason Hatcher to free agency, coupled with a season ending knee injury to MLB Sean Lee during Organized Team Activity in late May, the Dallas Cowboys, were one of the most admonished, second guessed NFL franchises through the entire preseason, half-way into the 2014 regular season.
Much of the criticism was in response to the Cowboys selecting Notre Dame offensive guard Zack Martin over the perceived Cowboys savior in the first round of the NFL draft. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was uncharacteristically down playing expectations for the upcoming season during spring training, emphasizing to the media and fans, that it might take a little more time for the Cowboys young players to mature into a NFL championship caliber team. Adding injury to the many insults hurled at Jerry Jones, Tony Romo and the Cowboys organization in general, Tony Romo did not play well during two preseason starts after receiving only a small percentage of snaps throughout training camp, due to continuing recovery from off-season surgery to repair a herniated intervertebral disc in his lower back. For these reasons and the Cowboys passing offense struggled mightily for the first two games of the regular season, causing many fans and media to declare the Dallas Cowboys as the absolute worst team in the league after their week 1 loss to the 49ers at AT&T Stadium.
A humiliating turnover led to defeat for Dallas, which appeared to prove all the Cowboy critics right, that Jerry Jones should have selected QB Johnny "Football" Manziel in the first round of the NFL 2014 draft to replace. By season's end, not only would Tony Romo have the highest quarterback rating in the NFL for the 2014 regular season but, first round pick would have a well deserved All-Pro season while establishing himself as a critical piece in the development of what many now consider to be, the best offensive line in the entire NFL. Following a win against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 16, the Cowboys won the NFC East; this guaranteed making the playoffs for the first time since 2009. The Cowboys improved on their 8–8 record from 2013 after finishing 12–4. For the season, the team was 8–0 on the road. Plenty of milestones were established by the 2014 Cowboys team, topped by DeMarco Murray's record-setting rushing season; the Cowboys defeated the Detroit Lions at home 24-20 in the Wild Card round and advanced to the Divisional Playoffs.
However, the Green Bay Packers defeated them 26-21, handing the Cowboys their first road loss and ending their season. Note: Intra-division opponents are in bold text; the Cowboys are 16-17-1 against the San Francisco 49ers from 1960 to 2014. Since Dallas won the next two meetings, both at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, in 2016 and 2017; the Cowboys haven't started 0-2 since 2010 when Wade Phillips was fired midway through the season and Jason Garrett was promoted to head coach. The Cowboys 21 point comeback win against the Rams was a new Cowboys record for the largest point deficit that a Cowboys team has come back from and won - in a game that didn't go into overtime, it became the third 21-point comeback victory in Cowboys history. The other two coming in overtime in 1984 against New Orleans and 1999 against Washington; the Rams 2nd quarter 21 point lead is the second-largest lead blown by the Rams. The biggest deficit overcome by a Rams opponent is 23 points by the Packers in 1982, Denver had a 21-point rally in 1982.
Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey set a franchise record by making his 28th field goal in a row on a 40-yarder in the third quarter. Cowboys kicker Chris Boniol hit 27 straight field goals in 1996. After 4 weeks of regular season play, DeMarco Murray found himself in elite company with his 149-yard 2 touchdown performance against the Saints, joining Jim Brown, O. J. Simpson and former Cowboy Emmitt Smith as the only players to rush for 100 or more yards, while scoring a touchdown, in the first four games of a season; the Cowboys three-game winning streak was their first since the 2012 season. After hauling in a 34-yard completion from Tony Romo mid-way though the third quarter, Cowboys TE Jason Witten surpassed 10,000 receiving yards for his career, making him only the 3rd tight end in NFL history to do so. Witten's 59-yard day against the Texans left him just 46 yards shy of the No. 2 position held by Shannon Sharpe with 10,060 career receiving yards. Tony Gonzalez leads all tight ends in career receiving yards at 15,127, respectively.
The Cowboys four-game winning streak was their first since 2011, their best start since 2008. DeMarco Murray's 115 yard rushing day against the Seahawks, made him only the second running back in NFL history - next to Jim Brown - to rush for 100 yards in the first 6 games of the season. Jim Brown did it for the first six gam
Fullback (gridiron football)
A fullback is a position in the offensive backfield in American and Canadian football, is one of the two running back positions along with the halfback. Fullbacks are larger than halfbacks and in most offensive schemes their duties are split between power running, pass catching, blocking for both the quarterback and the other running back. Many great runners in the history of American football have been fullbacks, including Jim Brown, Marion Motley, Jim Taylor, Franco Harris, Larry Csonka, John Riggins, Christian Okoye, Levi Jackson. However, many of these runners would retroactively be labeled as halfbacks, due to their position as the primary ball carrier. Examples of players who have excelled at the hybrid running-blocking-pass catching role include Mike Alstott, Daryl Johnston, Lorenzo Neal. In the days before two platoons, the fullback was the team's punter and drop kicker; when at the beginning of the 20th century, a penalty was introduced for hitting the opposing kicker after a kick, the foul was at first called "running into the fullback", inasmuch as the deepest back did the kicking.
Before the emergence of the T-formation in the 1940s, most teams used four offensive backs, lined up behind the offensive line, on every play: a quarterback, two halfbacks, a fullback. The quarterback began each play a quarter of the way "back" behind the offensive line, the halfbacks began each play side by side and halfway "back" behind the offensive line, the fullback began each play the farthest "back" behind the offensive line; each offensive back was known by a position name that described his relative distance behind the offensive line. As the quarterback was the offensive back who first touched the ball after the snap, quarterbacks were the offensive back most to pass the ball, although any eligible player may do so; as the game evolved and alternate formations came in and out of fashion, halfbacks emerged as the offensive back most to run the ball, again, any eligible player may do so. "Halfback" came to be synonymous with "running back". Fullbacks were used as blocking backs with only occasional ball carrying duties.
As formations began to favor placing the blocking back ahead of/ closer to the line of scrimmage than the running back, these blocking backs retained the name "fullback" though they were closer to the offensive line than the halfback. "Fullback" became a misnomer, the term "halfback" declined in usage, replaced variously with the more descriptive term "tailback" or the generic term "running back". In the modern game, when the quarterback is under center, the fullback most lines up directly behind the quarterback and in front of the halfback or tailback; the fullback position has seen a decline in recent time, with only 17 full time fullbacks playing in 2016. The trend can be traced back to teams choosing to pass more, the use of the 11 personnel, the use of h-backs. Fullbacks are known less for speed and agility and more for muscularity and the ability to shed tackles. In the modern NFL, while deployed as ball carriers, are primarily a lead blocker to allow running backs to get to the secondary of the opposing team's defense.
In the early 2000s, many NFL teams used blocking fullbacks, such as Tony Richardson and Lorenzo Neal, with great success. These backs cleared the way for some of the decade's great running backs; some teams have phased the fullback position out of their offense altogether, with those teams either all but eschewing the I-formation, or instead utilizing either a tight end, h-back, or backup running back in the role. There are still fullbacks who remaining prominent in the NFL, among them Aaron Ripkowski, Andy Janovich, Jamize Olawale, James Develin, John Kuhn, Tommy Bohanon, Patrick DiMarco, Mike Tolbert, Kyle Juszczyk, Marcel Reece. However, in spite of their infrequent carries in modern NFL offenses, some fullbacks have led their team in rushing – notably, Le'Ron McClain was the rushing leader for the Baltimore Ravens in 2008 and Tony Richardson led the Kansas City Chiefs in rushing in 2000. Former Browns running back Peyton Hillis started his NFL career as a fullback before being converted into a halfback.
Although technically a running back fullbacks are valued for their blocking in most modern-day offenses. The most common and simple runs, the Dive and the Blast, both employ the fullback as the primary blocker to "make way" for the halfback. In the flexbone formation, the fullback can be used as the primary rushing threat. In many other offensive schemes, the fullback is used as a receiver when the defense blitzes. In selected plays, some teams will have a defensive lineman report as an eligible receiver to line up as a fullback or tight end in a "Miami" package in goalline formation. Examples of such players who have been used as situational fullbacks include Haloti Ngata, Dontari Poe, Jared Allen while with the Kansas City Chiefs, Richard Seymour while with the New England Patriots, Isaac Sopoaga while with the San Francisco 49ers, while Dan Klecko and Nikita Whitlock have played both as a defensive tackle and fullback. Defensive Tackle William "The Refrigerator" Perry scored a touchdown in Super Bowl XX from the fullback position.
Most teams in the NFL do not have a substitute fullback. The role can be filled by backup or number three or four tight ends or bigger and less-frequently-used running backs. Defensive
James Ugochu Ihedigbo is a former American football safety. He was signed by the New York Jets as an undrafted free agent in 2007, he played college football at Massachusetts. Ihedigbo played at Amherst Regional High School where he was a two-time All-Western Massachusetts and All-League selection. James Ihedigbo played football at the University of Massachusetts Amherst from 2002-2006. After arriving in 2002, Ihedigbo redshirted his first year. In the following season, he started 10 of 12 games for UMass, picking off 4 passes, making a total of 74 tackles with 2 forced fumbles and was named the team's most improved defensive player. In 2004 James had 52 Tackles but no interception. In his third year at Massachusetts, Ihedigbo switched to strong safety from free safety and ranked sixth on the team in total tackles with 45. In his redshirt junior year, he was named to the Atlantic 10 conference third team and started at strong safety for a team which allowed the fewest points in all of Division I-AA football.
He finished third in the conference in sacks with 7.5. As a senior, he had 72 tackles, 5 quarterback sacks, 3 interception and 4 forced fumbles, he was a candidate for the Buck Buchanan Award and a Walter Camp All-American as well as a senior captain, he received UMass team MVP for 2006. Ihedigbo attended Jets rookie minicamps and signed a contract with the Jets and general manager Mike Tannenbaum. In the second game of the preseason against the Minnesota Vikings Ihedigbo injured his hand and missed the rest of the season as the Jets placed him on injured reserve. In 2008, Ihedigbo began the season on the practice squad, he was added to the active roster on October 2008 because of an injury to safety Eric Smith. James Ihedigbo recorded his first NFL tackle on November 23, 2008 against the Tennessee Titans in a 34-13 Jets win. During 2008 season he had 8 tackles. Ihedigbo made the Jets in 2009 as a backup safety. In a 16–13 overtime loss to the Buffalo Bills on October 18, 2009, Ihedigbo and fellow Jet Marques Murrell threw punches at Bills tight end Derek Fine, causing Ihedigbo to be ejected from the game by officials.
The NFL fined both players $5,000 and head coach Rex Ryan benched Ihedigbo, along with Murrell, for the following game against the Oakland Raiders. On December 13, 2009, against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Ihedigbo got his first NFL sack on quarterback Josh Freeman; the Jets going into week 17 had 8 wins and 7 loses and needed one win to make the playoffs as they were playing the Cincinnati Bengals. James Ihedigbo had his best game as a pro with 2 tackles. One of those tackles was a sack and a forced fumble of quarterback J. T. O'Sullivan, recovered by Jamaal Westerman; the Jets clinched a playoff berth. In the AFC wild card playoff game, the Jets beat the Bengals again, 24–14. In the AFC divisional playoff game, the Jets played the San Diego Chargers. In the fourth quarter of the game, Jay Feely was kicking off to San Diego after a Jets touchdown by quarterback Mark Sanchez; the kick return was taken by Antonio Cromartie but during the return Ihedigbo ripped the ball out of his hands for a forced fumble.
The Jets went on to win 17–14. The Jets were one win away from the Super Bowl. James Ihedigbo had 3 tackles but the Jets lost to the Indianapolis Colts, 30–17. James Ihedigbo finished the season with 2 sacks and 1 forced fumble in 15 games. On March 22, 2010, Ihedigbo signed a one-year contract with the New York Jets; the Jets were considered by many to be Super Bowl contenders. They opened the season on Monday September 13, 2010 against the Baltimore Ravens in the Jets' new home, MetLife Stadium. Ihedigbo recorded his first tackle of the year but the Jets lost 10-9. James Ihedigbo recorded his first sack of the season in week 4 against the Buffalo Bills and quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, he finished with two tackles as the Jets won 38 to 14. The Jets were in first place in their division with a 6-2 record going into week 10 against the Cleveland Browns. James had his second sack of the year in the fourth quarter; the Jets won the game in overtime when Mark Sanchez threw a touchdown pass to Santonio Holmes for the victory.
In week 12 The Jets were playing the Cincinnati Bengals on a Thanksgiving game on the NFL Network. Late in the 3rd quarter Steve Weatherford punted a ball. Ihedigbo jumped on the ball giving the Jets the ball. On that drive because of Ihedigbo fumble recovery the Jets scored on a touchdown pass from Mark Sanchez to Santonio Holmes; the Jets won 26-10 and push their record to 9-2. This kept them in first place, tied with the Patriots; the next week the Jets were tied for first place with the New England Patriots and playing their game in New England. James Ihedigbo sacked Tom Brady late in the 1st quarterTom Brady but the Jets struggled all night as the Jets lost 45-3, dropping them out of first place; the Jets ended the season with 11 wins and 5 loses and finished in 2nd place in the AFC East behind the Patriots. The Jets won. In the AFC divisional round the Jets played the New England Patriots. Ihedigbo would have 2 tackles as the Jets would upset the Patriots 28-21 to get to the AFC championship game.
Next week the Jets lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers and missed the Super Bowl by one game for the second straight year. James Ihedigbo ended the year with 3 sacks. After the NFL lockout ended Ihedigbo became a free agent; the Jets had three free agent safeties: Brodney Pool, Eric Smith, James Ihedigbo. The Jets decided to let Ihedigbo go. Ihedigbo signed with the New England Patriots on August 19, 2011
Brandon Dennard Pettigrew is a former American football tight end. He played college football at Oklahoma State, he was drafted in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions. Brandon Pettigrew played high school football at Robert E. Lee High School in Tyler, where he was teammates with Matt Flynn, Justin Warren, Ciron Black. While at Robert E. Lee, Pettigrew played on defense; as a senior, he was amed All-East Texas. He was one of three players to be named to the All-State team, he chose to attend Oklahoma State University over Texas A&M, Texas Christian University, Southern Methodist University and Arkansas. Pettigrew played college football at Oklahoma State; as a freshman in 2005, he appeared in 11 games. He recorded 11 receptions for one touchdown. In 2006, as a sophomore, he started all 13 games, he was an All-Big 12 honorable mention. As a junior in 2007, he started all 13 games, he recorded 35 receptions for four touchdowns. As a senior in 2008, he recorded 42 receptions for 472 yards.
During his career he recorded 112 receptions for nine touchdowns. Pettigrew was selected in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions; the pick used to select Pettigrew was acquired by the Lions in a trade that sent Roy Williams to the Dallas Cowboys. On July 31, 2009, the Detroit Lions signed him to a five-year, $14.60 million contract with $9.4 million guaranteed and a signing bonus of $5.09 million. The best game of his rookie season came on November 22 against the Cleveland Browns: he caught six passes for 72 yards, including the game-winning touchdown. Pettigrew suffered a knee injury during the opening drive of the Lions' annual Thanksgiving Day game in Detroit; the next day, an MRI revealed. On December 1, 2009, Pettigrew was placed on injured reserve and missed the rest of the 2009 season, he finished the season with 30 receptions for two touchdowns. In 2010, he recorded 71 receptions for four touchdowns, his 71 receptions and 722 receiving yards were both third best among tight ends.
For the 2011 season, he recorded 83 receptions for five touchdowns. In 2012, he recorded 59 receptions for three touchdowns. For the 2013 season, he recorded 41 receptions for two touchdowns. On March 14, 2014, the Lions signed Pettigrew to a four-year, $12 million free-agent contract with $8 million guaranteed and a signing bonus of $4 million. For the 2014 season, he recorded 10 receptions for 70 yards. In a December 13, 2015, game against the St. Louis Rams, Pettigrew suffered a torn ACL, he was placed on injured reserve on December 15. For the 2015 season, he recorded seven receptions for one touchdown. Pettigrew started out the 2016 on the PUP list to recover from his torn ACL the previous season, he was moved to the reserve/non-football injury list on December 6, 2016. Days the Lions cleared out his locker, indicating that the team could be moving on without him, he was released by the Lions on December 9, 2016. Pettigrew was arrested on July 9, 2018, in Pittsburgh, PA, for assaulting a policeman after an argument arose regarding an unpaid limo fee.
Pettigrew was arrested for disorderly conduct and public drunkenness on February 5, 2017, after a Dallas, Texas bar fight. Detroit Lions bio Oklahoma State Cowboys bio