NFL talent rich New Orleans again sends dozens of players to training camps

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Arthur Maulet (#37)
Arthur Maulet (#37) is an undrafted rookie free agent who has impressed in training camp at cornerback for the Saints (Photo: Parker Waters).

Historically, the Crescent City has produced some fantastic talent the NFL has ever witnessed. Names like Richie Petitbon, Aeneas Williams, LeRoy Hoard, Hank Lauricella, Billy Truax, Jackie Wallace, Eddie Price, Steve Van Buren, Tyrone Hughes, Ed Reed and Marshall Faulk have captured NFL headlines. Some have been rewarded with pro football’s highest honor, the Hall of Fame in Canton.

The current crop of NFL players currently on rosters from greater New Orleans? The average number is between 37-40 players each season yet 2017 is a little more special with 42 former Metro area prep players occupying NFL camps this preseason.

The Pelican state has 109 former high school stars vying for roster spots around the league That says a lot for the talent and drive the players possess, not to overlook the outstanding prep coaches that we are blessed to have.

If you’re looking for an NFL team to root for based on local talent, the Big Apple is the place. The New York Jets and Giants each have seven players from Louisiana and three from New Orleans. The L.A. Rams and Miami Dolphins each have a half dozen former Louisiana prepsters on their current rosters. The New Orleans Saints, Jaguars and Colts are next with five each.

The AFC has 24 players from the Greater Metro area while the NFC has 18. Here is the breakdown…

Lamar Louis, Ravens, West St. John, LSU
Mike Wallace, Ravens, O.P. Walker, Ole Miss
Patrick Lewis, Bills, East St. John, Texas A&M
Ryan Brown, Bengals, Shaw, Miss. State
Cethan Carter, Bengals, Rummel, Nebraska
James Wright, Browns, Belle Chasse, LSU
Carlos Henderson, Broncos, McD 35, La. Tech
Lorenzo Doss, Broncos, St. Augustine, Tulane
Alfred Blue, Texans, Hahnville, LSU
Chris Clark, Texans, McD 35, Southern Miss
Treston Decoud, Texans, Lakeshore, Oregon State
Jeremy Vujinovich, Colts, Belle Chasse, La. College
Al Riles, Colts, Northshore H.S., ULL
Lavar Edwards, Colts, Desire Street Academy, LSU
Leonard Fournette, Jaguars, St. Augustine, LSU
Dwayne Thomas, Jaguars, O.P. Walker, LSU
Jamal Robinson, Jaguars, Salmen, ULL
Dexter McCoil, Chargers, Lutcher, Tulsa
Lamin Barrow, Dolphins, John Ehret, LSU
Jarvis Landry, Dolphins, Lutcher, LSU
Anthony Johnson, Jets, O.P. Walker, LSU
Matt Forte, Jets, Slidell, Tulane
Rickey Jefferson, Raiders, Destrehan, LSU
Isane Faciane, Dolphins, Slidell, FIU

Tyrann Mathieu, Cardinals, St. Augustine, LSU
Deion Jones, Falcons, Jesuit, LSU
Duke Riley, Falcons, Curtis, LSU
Trai Turner, Carolina, St. Augustine, LSU
Josh Rounds, Bears, McMain, Tulane
Rico Gathers, Cowboys, Riverside, Baylor (basketball)
Cornelius Lucas, Lions, Edna Karr, Kansas State
Malachi Dupre, Packers, Curtis, LSU
Delvin Breaux, Saints, McD 35, LSU
Michael Mauti, Saints, Mandeville, Penn State
Arthur Maulet, Saints, Bonnabel, Memphis
Eli Manning, Giants, Newman, Ole Miss
Odell Beckham, Jr., Giants, Newman, LSU
Dillon Gordon, Philadelphia, Curtis, LSU
Cyril Grayson, Seahawks, Rummel, LSU (track)
Otha Peters, Seahawks, Covington, ULL
Tramain Jacobs, Lions, Covenant Christian, Texas A&M
Ed Eagan, Giants, Holy Cross, Northwestern State

The high school from New Orleans with the most current NFL talent is St. Augustine (four), followed by O.P. Walker, John Curtis and McDonogh 35 (three each).

Jacksonville has four Metro area players while the Dolphins, Texans, Saints and Giants have three on their rosters.

Which New Orleans high school have turned out the most NFL talent all-time? Check out the tally by school (yes, some of them “ain’t dere no more”):
Abramson – 2
Amite – 6
Belle Chasse – 3
Bonnabel – 4
Brother Martin – 3
Carver – 7
Chalmette – 1
Cohen – 3
Clark – 5
Covington – 5
De La Salle – 5
Destrehan – 7
East Jefferson – 6
East St. John – 6
John Ehret – 8
Fortier – 6
Hahnville – 6
Higgins – 2
Edna Karr – 7
John F. Kennedy – 2
L.B. Landry – 4
Leon Godchaux – 1
Lutcher – 5
Mandeville – 2
McDonogh – 3
McDonogh 35 – 6
McMain – 2
Newman – 4
Nicholls – 1
Sarah Reed – 1
Redeemer – 1
Rummel – 5
S.J. Peters – 1
Salmen – 4
Slidell – 5
St. Aloysius – 2
St. James – 3
St. Paul’s – 1
Warren Easton – 5
B.T. Washington – 3
West St. John – 2
Xavier Prep – 4
Lakeshore – 1
Riverside – 1
Northshore – 1
Desire Street Academy – 1

You noticed that there were some schools missing from that list. I saved the REAL heavyweights, the BIG producers of NFL talent from the Metro New Orleans area, for last.

Jesuit, Holy Cross and West Jefferson have each sent nine players to the NFL over the years.

O.P. Walker and John Curtis, both with 11 representatives making it to NFL camps, are tied but I realize L.B. Landry did have four. I did not combine those with O.P. Walker’s total even though Landry-Walker now exists after the two schools merged in recent years.

Archbishop Shaw has sent an impressive 19 former players to the NFL. It is also one of the few schools locally to have produced an NFL head coach, Vance Joseph with Denver.

The all-time champion of NFL producers in NOLA? It’s the St. Augustine Purple Knights with an astonishing 46 players who went onto to wear an NFL uniform going back to 1964 when offensive tackle Alfred Jenkins left 2600 A.P Tureaud in New Orleans, first playing his college football at Tulsa before an NFL career that included part of the undefeated 16-0 Miami Dolphins in 1972.

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Rene Nadeau


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Born and raised in the New Orleans area, Rene Nadeau has been involved in sports ever since his earliest memories. Rene played basketball, wrestled, ran track, and was an All-District running back in football at John F. Kennedy High School. He went on to play football at LSU, developing a passion for the game in even greater fashion while in…

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