Which Former Falcons are in the XFL?


getty Jhurell Pressley #26 of the DC Defenders.

There were familiar faces and names out on the field all weekend as the XFL officially kicked off on Saturday night.

A handful of former Atlanta Falcons players and coaches have found their way into the league.

Dallas Renegades

For the Dallas Renegades, you have former wide receiver, Freddie Martino.

Martino played for the Falcons from 2014 to 2015. He also spent some time with the Eagles and Buccaneers. The Falcons played catch and release with Martino more than once. After going undrafted, the Falcons signed him in May 2014 and then released him in August and signed him to the teams’ practice squad. The process was repeated two more times until August 2015.  

DC Defenders

There are a few more familiar faces of the Defenders that you might recognize.

Cornerback, Jalen Myrick. Myrick spent time on and off of the Vikings roster before signing with the Falcons in August 2019. However, by the time the final roster rolled around he didn’t make the cut. Myrick is currently on the Reserved Injury list and is expected to have his roster slot replaced for the time being.

Running Back, Jhurrell Pressley signing with the Falcons from 2016 to 2017 happened after Devonte Freeman suffered a bad concussion and B.J. Daniels suffered a hamstring injury.

Linebacker, Jon Celestin originally signed a $1.7 million three-year contract with the Falcons but wound up getting cut coming out of the 2019 preseason.

Linebacker, Jon Massaquoi From 2012-2014, Massaquoi was making an impact in the NFL, with 6 sacks for the Falcons. Massaquoi recently played for the Birmingham Iron, where he was a Defensive Player of the Week.

Houston Roughnecks

Four more Falcons players on the Houston Roughnecks including former OC and head coach, June Jones.

Head coach now for the Roughnecks, Jones spent three seasons as the Falcons’ offensive coordinator from 1991 to 1993. He was named head coach in 1994. He took over one of the NFL’s worst teams at the time and coached them to the playoffs without having any first or second-round picks.

Offensive coordinator, Chris Miller for the Roughnecks played QB for the Falcons as a first-round pick from 1987 to 1993 under June Jones.

Wide receiver Kahlil Lewis was picked up by the Falcons as an undrafted free agent in 2019 and then was waived.

Cornerback, Deji Olatoye was signed to the practice team and shortly promoted to the active roster in 2016. That year, Olatoye and the Falcons reached Super Bowl LI, where they faced the New England Patriots and blew it in the 4th quarter. The Falcons waived Olatoye in September of 2017.

New York Guardians

The New York Guardians‘ roster has one former Falcon, defensive tackle Joey Mbu.

Mbu originally signed with the Falcons on and off for his first two seasons in the NFL starting in 2015 and eventually stopped to sign with the Redskins taxi squad in 2016.

Seattle Dragons

The Seattle Dragons have the most Falcons players on their roster.

Quarterback, B.J. Daniels signed to the Atlanta Falcons’ practice squad in 2016. He signed a reserve/future contract with the Falcons in February of 2017 and by June switched positions to running back. He was released the same year in August. 

Wide receiver, Dontez Dyrd signed in 2018 as the guy that Twitter was supposed to fall in love with. *Cue cricket noise*

Safety, Tyson Graham joined the Falcons in 2017 but was waived before the season started.

Defensive end, Stansly Maponga grew up in Zimbabwe as a soccer player before coming to America. He played in Atlanta from 2013 to 2015. He was drafted in the fifth round out of TCU.

Defensive end, Durrant Miles was one of the 16 undrafted free agents the Falcons signed on in 2019 but didn’t make the cut.

Tampa Bay Vipers

The Vipers also have a coach that was the head coach of the Falcons back in 1990, Jerry Glanville.

Glanville started out as the DBs coach in 1977 and then moved up to DC until 1982 and then came back as head coach in 1990.

Cornerback, Jalen Collins was selected in the second round (42nd overall) of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Falcons and played from 2015 to 2017.

Safety, Marcelis Branch signed with Atlanta as an undrafted free agent in 2017 and shortly waived, but resigned to the practice squad the next day. In 2018 he signed a reserve? future contract.

The St. Louis Battlehawks‘ and the Los Angeles Wildcats‘ roster do not have any former Falcons, but we will be sure to keep you updated!

For now, it will be fun to watch the former Falcon players given another chance to prove that they have what it takes to play ball out in the XFL.

READ NEXT: UGA Football Alum Cameron Nizialek Ready When Falcons Are

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