Former Stanford players all set for the postseason playoffs


With one week of the NFL season remaining the playoffs are nearly set and a host of former Cardinal players are in line for postseason play. At least one former Stanford player is on the active roster of six of the nine teams that have clinched spots in the 12-team bracket.

New England (Cameron Fleming), Denver (Jeremy Stewart), Pittsburgh (David DeCastro) and Indianapolis (Andrew Luck, Coby Fleener) have earned AFC berths, while Seattle (Doug Baldwin, Richard Sherman) and Arizona (Josh Mauro, Stepfan Taylor) are set for matchups on the NFC side. Seattle, New England and Denver are in place for byes as top two seeds in their respective divisions.

Philadelphia's Zach Ertz did everything he could to keep the Eagles in the hunt, before dropping a 27-24 decision to Trent Murphy's Washington Redskins last Thursday night. Ertz had 15 receptions, the most by an NFL player since Jason Witten caught 18 passes in 2012. The mark set an Eagles franchise record in the first 100-yard game of his career. Ertz finished with 115 receiving yards.

Baldwin also had a receiving hand, in Seattle's 35-6 win over host Arizona, as the wideout had seven receptions for 113 yards. Sherman had four tackles and one interception returned for 53 yards. For Arizona, Taylor carried 11 times for 19 yards and had two catches for 25 yards with defensive end Mauro getting one tackle for the Cardinals.

At Carolina, Cleveland defensive back Johnson Bademosi had two special teams tackles and defensive lineman Sione Fua had four tackles, with teammate Jim Dray catching one pass for four yards as the Browns fell to the Panthers, 17-13.

At Dallas, Andrew Luck completed 15 of 22 passes for just 109 yards and two interception in Indianapolis' 42-7 loss to the Cowboys. Colts tight end Coby Fleener had four receptions for 36 yards.

Elsewhere, Fleming played as an extra blocking tight end in New England's 17-16 win over the host New York Jets while Chris Owusu played wide receiver for New York; DeCastro started at right guard in Pittsburgh's 20-12 win over Kansas City; Jacksonville running back Toby Gerhart had 12 carries for 53 yards and one TD plus one reception for seven yards in a 21-13 victory over Tennessee, which had Will Svitek seeing time at offensive tackle.

Erik Lorig started at fullback in New Orleans' 30-14 loss to Atlanta, which got four receptions for 17 yards from tight end Levine Toilolo. Ryan Hewitt played for Cincinnati in a 37-28 victory over the Broncos, which saw running back Jeremy Stewart in action for Denver.

San Francisco's 38-35 loss to San Diego last weekend saw Jonathan Martin getting action as an extra blocking tight end and Chase Thomas playing on special teams, returning a kickoff eight yards for the Niners.

— Stanford Athletics/Palo Alto Online Sports

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