Knights NFL Notes
Kevin Smith (Carlos Osorio/AP)
Kevin Smith (Carlos Osorio/AP)
Posted Aug 5, 2008
Charlie Bernstein

UCF had three players selected in April’s NFL draft, and with training camps underway across the league, is going to check on the former Knights progress.

Kevin Smith- 24K is reportedly standing out in Lions camp, but his nickname will likely have to change as Smith will likely not get his number 24. Smith is currently wearing No. 34. He said he wanted No. 24, his college number. But it belongs to safety Greg Blue, and if Blue lets it go, veteran safety Dwight Smith is next in line. "I wanted 24 so bad it hurt my heart when I couldn't get it," he said. "Too much money. ... I was willing to pay, like, ten thousand, and I heard rumors it's going to cost, like, 50. I'm ain't buying nobody no car, now."

Aside from his numerical issues, the rookie has shown the vision and cutting ability expected of him, but he has also shown he can pick up blitzes and catch the ball out of the backfield. His engaging personality is already winning over the media.

Smith has been working with the Lions first-team offense due to Tatum Bell missing a practice. Since, Smith has fit in well and showed an ability to break tackles. It will be interesting to see the former Knight in preseason, and the Lions open with the Super Bowl Champion New York Giants this Thursday night.

Josh Sitton- The progress of offensive guards isn’t quite as easy to evaluate, but from all accounts Josh Sitton is doing well. Sitton is currently No. 2 on the depth chart at right guard behind incumbent starter Jason Spitz. Sitton, though, could make things interesting as camp goes on. He has dominated his matchups in one-on-one pass-rush drills and has been getting some reps with the No. 1 unit, when Spitz has moved to center for spot duty.

The Packers are somewhat unsettled at the guard positions and Sitton could make a run at a starting job before training camp is over. Sitton’s versatility to play on the interior or outside at tackle could bode well for him in terms of a long NFL career.

“The versatility is huge,” said Sitton. “You’ve got to be able to play more than one position at this level.”

Although all eyes will be on the Packers quarterback situation (circus), Sitton will make his NFL debut on Monday Night Football August 11th, against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Mike Merritt- It hasn’t been a storybook start for the former Conference USA Honorable Mention tight end. Merritt is recovering from offseason surgery and he hasn’t been cleared to play yet for the Chiefs, who selected him in the seventh-round.

Leger Douzable- The former Knight went undrafted, but immediately signed with the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikes have a fantastic defensive tackle rotation including Pro Bowlers Pat and Kevin Williams, so the chances of Douzable earning a roster spot are slim. Still, the big 6’5”, 295 lb. tackle has made some plays and has been noticed in Vikings camp. Last Wednesday, Douzable intercepted a screen pass from quarterback Gus Frerotte. Douzable will make his NFL debut Friday night at home against Seattle.

Keith Shologan- Shologan was waived by the San Diego Chargers back in June.

Related Stories
Lions Roster Projection, 2008 (First Issue)
 -by  Aug 6, 2008
Rookie Smith Getting First-Team Reps
 -by  Aug 1, 2008
Another Look: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly
 -by  Aug 8, 2008

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DT Leger Douzable (profile)
OG Josh Sitton (profile)
RB Kevin Smith (profile)
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