Share this story...
Jaylon Johnson - Chicago Bears - Detroit Lions
Latest News

Former Utes In Rookie Debuts Highlight Opening Week Of 2020 NFL Season

From left, Tashaun Gipson #38 of the Chicago Bears, Jaylon Johnson #33 of the Chicago Bears, Tarik Cohen #29 of the Chicago Bears, Josh Woods #55 of the Chicago Bears celebrate winning the game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on September 13, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A group of first-year players from the University of Utah performed well during their rookie debuts in the first week of the 2020 NFL season.

Former Utes Zack Moss and Jaylon Johnson made crucial plays in their first games as professional athletes on Sunday, September 13.

Here is how all of the players with ties to the state of Utah fared during the opening week of the season.

Former Utah Utes

Kylie Fitts – Linebacker – Arizona Cardinals (1-0)

The former Utah linebacker assisted on one tackle during a play on special teams in Arizona’s 24-20 win over the San Francisco 49ers.

Next Game: vs. Washington Football Team (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:05 p.m. (MDT) on FOX

Leki Fotu – Defensive Tackle – Arizona Cardinals (1-0)

The former Utes defensive tackle helped the Cardinals defeat the San Francisco 49ers 24-20.

Next Game: vs. Washington Football Team (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:05 p.m. (MDT) on FOX

Zack Moss – Running Back – Buffalo Bills (1-0)

The former Utah running back carried the ball nine times for 11 yards and recorded three receptions for 16 yards and a touchdown in his first NFL game. Moss and the Bills beat the New York Jets 27-17.

Next Game: @ Miami Dolphins (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Jaylon Johnson – Cornerback – Chicago Bears (1-0)

The former Utes defensive back recorded 2 pass breakups, 6 tackles, and 5 solo tackles in the Bears’ 27-23 win over the Detroit Lions. Johnson had a game-sealing PBU to seal Chicago’s victory as time expired.

Next Game: vs. New York Giants (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Bradlee Anae – Defensive End – Dallas Cowboys (0-1)

Anae and the Cowboys lost to the Los Angles Rams 20-17.

Next Game: vs. Atlanta Falcons (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Garrett Boles – Offensive Tackle – Denver Broncos (0-1)

Bolles and the Broncos fell 16-14 to the Tennessee Titans on a last minute field goal on Monday, September 15.

Next Game: @ Pittsburgh Steelers (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Tim Patrick – Wide Receiver – Denver Broncos (0-1)

The former Utah receiver had four catches for 29 yards in the Broncos’ 16-14 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Monday, September 15.

Next Game: @ Pittsburgh Steelers (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

John Penisini – Defensive Tackle – Detroit Lions (0-1)

The former Utah defensive lineman and the Lions fell 27-23 to the Chicago Bears.

Next Game: @ Green Bay Packers (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 on 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Julian Blackmon – Safety – Indianapolis Colts (0-1)

Blackmon was inactive in the Colts’ 27-20 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Next Game: vs. Minnesota Vikings (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Devontae Booker – Running Back – Las Vegas Raiders (1-0)

The former Utes running back had four carries for 29 yards in the Raiders’ 34-30 win over the Carolina Panthers. Booker added three catches for 23 yards in the game. He had one fumble but it was retained by Las Vegas. Booker also recorded one tackle on special teams.

Next Game: vs. New Orleans Saints (1-0) on Monday, September 21 at 6:15 p.m. (MDT) on ESPN

Sam Tevi – Offensive Tackle – Los Angeles Chargers (1-0)

Tevi and the Chargers defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 16-13.

Next Game: vs. Kansas City Chiefs (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:25 p.m. (MDT) on CBS

Terrell Burgess – Safety – Los Angeles Rams (1-0)

Burgess and the Rams defeated the Dallas Cowboys 20-17.

Next Game: @ Philadelphia Eagles (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Eric Rowe – Safety – Miami Dolphins (0-1)

The former Utah defensive back recorded 5 total tackles and 3 solo tackles in Miami’s 21-11 loss to the New England Patriots.

Next Game: vs. Buffalo Bills (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Marcus Williams – Safety – New Orleans Saints (1-0)

The former Utah defensive back had 1 tackles, 1 interception, and a pass breakup in the Saints’ 34-23 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Next Game: vs. Carolina Panthers (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Jackson Barton – Offensive Tackle – New York Giants (0-1)

Barton and the Giants lost 26-16 to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday, September 14.

Next Game: @ Chicago Bears (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Mitch Wishnowsky – Punter – San Francisco 49ers (0-1)

The former Utah punter kicked the ball five times during the 49ers’ 24-20 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. Wishnowsky had one punt blocked and averaged 44.5 yards per punt on his other four kicks. He also recorded a tackle on special teams.

Next Game: @ New York Jets (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Cody Barton – Linebacker – Seattle Seahawks (1-0)

Barton and the Seahawks defeated the Atlanta Falcons 38-25.

Next Game: vs. New England Patriots (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on KSL TV

Marquise Blair – Safety – Seattle Seahawks (1-0)

The former Utah safety and the Seahawks defeated the Atlanta Falcons 38-25. The highlight of Blair’s performance was a forced fumble. He finished the game as the Seahawks’ second-leading tackler with seven total tackles and four solo tackles.

Next Game: vs. New England Patriots (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on KSL TV

Alex Smith – Quarterback – Washington Football Team (1-0)

Smith was inactive in the Washington Football Team’s 27-17 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Next Game: @ Arizona Cardinals (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:05 p.m. (MDT) on FOX

Former BYU Cougars

Sione Takitaki – Linebacker – Cleveland Browns (0-1)

The former BYU linebacker had 7 total tackles, 5 solo tackles, and a quarterback hit in the Browns’ 38-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

Next Game: vs. Cincinnati Bengals (0-1) on Thursday, September 17 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on NFL Network

Jamaal Williams – Running Back – Green Bay Packers (1-0)

The former Cougar running back had seven carries for 21 yards and four catches for 21 yards in the Packers’ 43-34 win over the Minnesota Vikings.

Next Game: vs. Detroit Lions (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX.

Daniel Sorensen – Safety – Kansas City Chiefs (1-0)

The former BYU defensive back had two tackles during the Chiefs’ 34-20 win over the Houston Texans on Thursday, September 10.

Next Game: @ Los Angeles Chargers (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:25 p.m. (MDT) on CBS

Michael Davis – Cornerback – Los Angeles Chargers (1-0)

The former BYU defensive back had one tackle in the Chargers’ 16-13 win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Next Game: vs. Kansas City Chiefs (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:25 p.m. (MDT) on CBS

Kyle Van Noy – Linebacker – Miami Dolphins (0-1)

The former Cougar linebacker had 5 total tackles, 3 solo tackles, and a tackle for loss in the Dolphins’ 21-11 loss to the New England Patriots.

Next Game: vs. Buffalo Bills (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Taysom Hill – Quarterback – New Orleans Saints (1-0)

The former BYU quarterback and New Orleans defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-23. Hill finished the game with one completion for 38 yards, three carries for 13 yards, and one reception for 14 yards.

Next Game: vs. Carolina Panthers (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Harvey Langi – Linebacker – New York Jets (0-1)

The former BYU linebacker had 6 total tackles, 5 solo tackles, and a pass breakup in the Jets’ 27-17 loss to the Buffalo Bills.

Next Game: vs. San Francisco 49ers (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX.

Fred Warner – Linebacker – San Francisco 49ers (0-1)

The former BYU linebacker recorded 10 total tackles, 6 solo tackles, and one pass breakup during the Niners’ 24-20 loss to the Arizona Cardinals.

Next Game: @ New York Jets (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Former Utah State Aggies

Tyler Larsen – Center – Carolina Panthers (0-1)

Larsen and the Panthers fell 34-30 to the Las Vegas Raiders.

Next Game: @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Patrick Scales – Long Snapper – Chicago Bears (1-0)

The former Aggie long snapper and the Bears defeated the Detroit Lions 27-23.

Next Game: vs. New York Giants (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS.

Jordan Love – Quarterback – Green Bay Packers (1-0)

Love was not active for the Packers’ 43-34 win over the Minnesota Vikings.

Next Game: vs. Detroit Lions (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Darwin Thompson – Running Back – Kansas City Chiefs (1-0)

The former Aggie running back and the Chiefs beat the Houston Texans 34-20 on Thursday, September 10.

Next Game: @ Los Angeles Chargers (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:25 p.m. (MDT) on CBS

JoJo Natson – Wide Receiver – Cleveland Browns (0-1)

The former Utah State receiver had one punt return for a yard during the Browns’ 38-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

Next Game: vs. Cincinnati Bengals (0-1) on Thursday, September 17 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on NFL Network

Dallin Leavitt – Safety – Las Vegas Raiders (1-0)

Leavitt was inactive in the Raiders’ 34-30 win over the Carolina Panthers.

Next Game: vs. New Orleans Saints (1-0) on Monday, September 21 at 6:15 p.m. (MDT) on ESPN

Nevin Lawson – Cornerback – Las Vegas Raiders (1-0)

Lawson served a one-game suspension during the Raiders’ season-opening 34-30 win over the Carolina Panthers.

Next Game: vs. New Orleans Saints (1-0) on Monday, September 21 at 6:15 p.m. (MDT) on ESPN

Nick Vigil – Linebacker – Los Angeles Chargers (1-0)

The former Utah State linebacker had 5 total tackles, 3 solo tackles, and a fumble recovery in the Chargers’ 16-13 win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Next Game: vs. Kansas City Chiefs (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:25 p.m. (MDT) on CBS

Kyler Fackrell – Linebacker – New York Giants (0-1)

Fackrell had 2 total tackles and a solo tackles in the Giants’ 26-16 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday, September 14.

Next Game: @ Chicago Bears (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Bobby Wagner – Linebacker – Seattle Seahawks (1-0)

The former Utah State linebacker had 7 total tackles, 2 solo tackles, 1 tackle for loss, and 2 pass breakups in Seattle’s 38-25 win over the Atlanta Falcons.

Next Game: vs. New England Patriots (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on KSL TV

Former Weber State Wildcats

Taron Johnson – Cornerback – Buffalo Bills (1-0)

The former Weber State defensive back recorded 5 total tackles, 4 solo tackles, and a pass breakup in the Bills’ 27-17 victory over the New York Jets.

Next Game: @ Miami Dolphins (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on CBS

Former Southern Utah Thunderbirds

LeShaun Sims – Cornerback – Cincinnati Bengals (0-1)

Sims was not active for the Bengals’ 16-13 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.

Next Game: @ Cleveland Browns (0-1) on Thursday, September 17 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on NFL Network

Miles Killebrew – Safety – Detroit Lions (0-1)

The former T-Bird and the Lions fell 27-23 to the Chicago Bears.

Next Game: @ Green Bay Packers (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 on 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Former High School Players

Xavier Su’a-Filo (Timpview/UCLA) – Offensive Guard – Cincinnati Bengals (0-1)

Su’a-Filo and the Bengals fell 16-13 to the Los Angeles Chargers. The offensive lineman was injured during the third quarter.

Next Game: @ Cleveland Browns (0-1) on Thursday, September 17 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on NFL Network

Porter Gustin (Salem Hills/USC) – Defensive End – Cleveland Browns (0-1)

The former Salem Hills star had a tackle in the Browns’ 38-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

Next Game: vs. Cincinnati Bengals (0-1) on Thursday, September 17 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on NFL Network.

Dalton Schultz (Bingham/Stanford) – Tight End – Dallas Cowboys (0-1)

The former Bingham star recorded on reception for 11 yards in Dallas’ 20-17 loss to the Los Angeles Rams.

Next Game: vs. Atlanta Falcons (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Noah Togiai (Hunter/Oregon State) – Tight End – Indianapolis Colts (0-1)

Togiai was inactive in the Colts’ 27-20 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Next Game: vs. Minnesota Vikings (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Alohi Gilman (Orem/Notre Dame) – Safety – Los Angeles Chargers (1-0)

Gilman and the Chargers defeated Cincinnati Bengals 16-13.

Next Game: vs. Kansas City Chiefs (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 2:25 p.m. (MDT) on CBS

Andre James (Herriman/UCLA) – Offensive Tackle – Las Vegas Raiders (1-0)

James and the Raiders defeated the Carolina Panthers 34-30.

Next Game: vs. New Orleans Saints (1-0) on Monday, September 21 at 6:15 p.m. (MDT) on ESPN

Kaden Elliss (Judge Memorial/Idaho) – Linebacker – New Orleans Saints (1-0)

Elliss and the Saints defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-23

Next Game: vs. Carolina Panthers (0-1) on Sunday, September 20 at 11 a.m. (MDT) on FOX

Bryan Mone (Highland/Michigan) – Defensive Tackle – Seattle Seahawks (1-0)

Mone and the Seahawks defeated the Atlanta Falcons 38-25.

Next Game: vs. New England Patriots (1-0) on Sunday, September 20 at 6:20 p.m. (MDT) on KSL TV

Kyle Ireland is a Locals in the NFL Insider for KSLSports.com and host of the Yards After College Podcast. Follow him on Twitter (@kyleireland) and Instagram (@kyleirelandksl).