Canadians Varga & Covington to make NFL debuts, Duvernay-Tardif to start at RG
In preparation for the start of the NFL regular season, which begins Thursday, September 10, teams cut-down their respective rosters to 53 active players. Amongst those that survived the final cuts are Tyler Varga, Christian Covington and Laurent Duvernay-Tardif.
Varga to debut against Bills
Kitchener native, Tyler Varga has made the Indianapolis Colts 53-man roster and will be primed for his NFL debut against the Buffalo Bills on September 13. He’s currently listed as the fourth running back on the Colts’ depth chart and will likely contribute on special teams.
Varga is an alumnus of the 2010 Football Canada Cup, representing Team Ontario West in Wolfville, Nova Scotia where he was named the tournament’s offensive MVP.
As a true freshman with the Western Mustangs in 2011, Varga won the CIS Rookie of the Year Award. He rushed for a league leading 15 touchdowns and 799 yards – second most in the OUA and fifth most in CIS.
Following his freshman season, the aspiring doctor transferred to Yale to play in the Ivey League.
In 10 games this season Varga rushed for an impressive 1,423 yards and 22 touchdowns. He added 12 catches, four of which were for touchdowns to set a new single-season school record of 26 majors. What’s even more impressive is in 9 out of 10 of his games this season he rushed for over 100 yards. During his career at Yale, Varga hit the century mark during a game 17 times in 24 total games.
This season he was a unanimous selection as first team All-Ivy in addition as a finalist for the Walter Payton Award, presented to the most outstanding FCS player.
Covington makes cut, Duvernay-Tardif earns start
In his second-year with the KC Chiefs, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif has earned his first NFL start at right guard (2 – in french). A year ago, the McGill product made the jump straight from Canadian university football to the NFL. The Football Canada Cup alumni (2009 U19 division, Quebec) and aspiring doctor converted from the defensive to offensive line during his second season with the Redmen in 2011.
Former Rice Owl, Christian Covington cracked the Houston Texans’ 53-man roster as well. The Texans 6th round pick looks to be slotted behind nose tackle, Vince Wilfork on the depth chart and may battle Duvernay-Tardif in his NFL debut as the Texans host the Chiefs in week 1 on Sunday, September 13.
Record seven CIS grads on NFL opening-day rosters (read CIS article here)
Stefan Charles, DT, Regina (Buffalo – 53-man roster)
Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, OG, McGill (Kansas City – 53-man roster)
Akiem Hicks, DE, Regina (New Orleans – 53-man roster)
Jon Ryan, P, Regina (Seattle – 53-man roster)
Tyler Varga, RB, Western (Indianapolis – 53-man roster)
David Foucault, OT, Montreal (Carolina – practice roster)
Brett Jones, C, Regina (NY Giants – injured reserve)
This post is also available in: French