Desmond Bryant (67) sacks San Francisco's Shaun Hill in a preseason game. Photo courtesy of Tony Gonzales.
OAKLAND, Calif. - Harvard graduate Desmond Bryant '09 has made the final roster as a defensive tackle for the Oakland Raiders. The team made its final cuts over the weekend and Bryant is one of three tackles listed on the 53-man roster. The Raiders, who also traded for Richard Seymour over the weekend from New England, have five defensive ends in addition to the three interior linemen.
Bryant, listed at 6 foot 5 and 290 pounds, had a terrific training camp and preseason. He played in all four preseason games - against Dallas, San Francisco, New Orleans and Seattle. He recorded at least one solo tackle in each game with three total tackles against San Francisco on Aug. 22. He had his first pro sack in that game, teaming up with William Joseph for a sack of Shaun Hill. The next week, on Aug. 29, he had a solo sack against the Saints to solidify his position on the team.
Bryant's NFL career begins in prime time on Monday Night football when the Raiders host the San Diego Chargers.
Bryant is joined on NFL rosters by Ryan Fitzpatrick '05 and Matt Birk '98. Fitzpatrick, in his first year with the Buffalo Bills after starting 12 games for the Bengals in 2008, appeared in three preseason games. He completed 29 of 44 passes (66 percent) for 255 yards and a touchdown. He was 12 for 16 (75 percent) for 112 yards against Green Bay in his first outing. Fitzpatrick was with Cincinnati for two years following a two-year stint with the St. Louis Rams in which he started three games in 2005.
Birk meanwhile started two preseason games in his first season with the Baltimore Ravens. Birk, now entering his 12th NFL season, is a six-time Pro Bowl center. He has started all but one game since 2000 (missed the 2005 season) and has 123 career starts in 146 games.