DE Frank Alexander (Carolina): Suspended the first four games after violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy, Alexander, a 2012 fourth-round pick, has been a backup in the Panthers’ defensive-line rotation. Alexander has compiled 33 tackles in 28 games, including 3 1/2 sacks.
QB Sam Bradford (St. Louis): The former No. 1 overall pick’s career in the crosshairs after he suffered another torn ACL injury in preseason. Bradford has notched stats (11,065 yards, 58.6 percent completion rate, 59-to-38 touchdown-to-interception ratio), that indicate he could still develop into an NFL franchise quarterback if the Putnam North product can stay healthy.
WR Justin Brown (Pittsburgh): Darrius Heyward-Bey’s strong camp showing made it tough for Brown to make the 53-man roster, but he made it. On the Steelers’ practice squad last season, Brown at some point could get an opportunity to work his way onto the field.
WR Ryan Broyles (Detroit): For the second straight year the NCAA’s all-time leading receptions leader was forced to overcome a major injury, this time a ruptured Achilles tendon. A second-round pick in 2012, Broyles has been limited to 16 games, but the Norman product led the Lions in receiving in preseason, further proof he can contribute when healthy. Last year, he played in only 10 games but had 22 catches.
S Quinton Carter (Denver): Trying to rebound from two lost seasons because of a knee injury, Carter played well his rookie season but must prove he’s healthy to play a key role. Carter started 12 games his rookie season (2011) and compiled 49 tackles his first two seasons before the knee injury led to a lengthy rehabilitation.
OG Chris Chester (Washington): Entering his ninth season, the former second-round pick has started 95 games, including all 48 games the past three seasons. Chester returns to his right guard slot, one of the Hogs assigned to protect QB Robert Griffin III.
CB: Aaron Colvin (Jacksonville): Sidelined by a knee injury, the Owasso product was placed on the non-football injury list. Colvin is prohibited from practicing or playing the first six weeks and must be activated by Week 11 to play his rookie season.
TE Jermaine Gresham (Cincinnati): In four seasons, the Ardmore product has compiled 218 receptions for 2,262 yards and 19 touchdowns. Playing in a two-tight end package last season, Gresham hauled in 46 passes for 458 yards and four TDs. But the Bengals keep adding quality tight ends — Tyler Eifert last year, Ryan Hewitt this season.
TE James Hanna (Dallas): A sixth-round pick two years ago, Hanna has solidified a roster spot as the Cowboys’ No. 3 tight end. In his first two seasons, Hanna has hauled in 20 catches and serves as an extra blocker in short-yardage situations.
CB Demontre Hurst (Chicago): The Bears are loaded with talented cornerbacks, but Hurst played well enough to make the 53-man roster after spending a year on the practice squad. Hurst could eventually work his way into Chicago’s nickel package.
S Tony Jefferson (Arizona): Proving he should have been drafted in the third or fourth round, Jefferson will be the Cardinals’ starting strong safety entering the season. As a rookie, Jefferson played in all 16 games, including two starts. He compiled 24 tackles.
OT Lane Johnson (Philadelphia): The fourth overall pick in the 2013 draft, Johnson will miss the first four games for testing positive for a banned substance. Johnson started all 16 games his rookie season and was an All-Rookie selection, but he won’t be eligible to return until Oct. 5.
QB Landry Jones (Pittsburgh): OU’s all-time leading passer, a fourth-round pick in 2013, Jones started the Steelers’ preseason finale but failed to lead Pittsburgh on a scoring drive. Jones, though, held onto his tenuous roster spot as the No. 3 quarterback after completing 57-of-110 passes for 572 yards with two TDs and four interceptions the past two years in preseason games.
OG Davin Joseph (St. Louis): The Rams signed the veteran O-lineman, who appeared in 100 games, including 99 starts, the past seven years with Tampa Bay. The two-time Pro Bowler is embracing the fresh start in a team that’s trying to take the next step despite losing Sam Bradford.
LB Travis Lewis (Detroit): A reserve, Lewis has appeared in 25 games his first two seasons. Lewis primarily has been relegated to special teams duties, compiling only nine tackles.
OT Phil Loadholt (Minnesota): A second-round pick in 2009, the Vikings’ right tackle has started 78 games his first five seasons, missing only two games. Scouts graded him at a Pro-Bowl level last season but he wasn’t named to the squad. He still has three years left on a $25 million extension.
LB Curtis Lofton (New Orleans): Ranked in the top 10 among all NFL players for tackles the past five seasons, Lofton begins his seventh season, his third with the Saints. The Kingfisher product compiled 125 tackles last season and has 740 in his career.
DT Gerald McCoy (Tampa Bay): The third overall pick in the 2010 draft, McCoy turned in a Pro Bowl season. Ranked as one of the top players in the NFL regardless of position, the Southeast High School product collected 50 tackles and 9 1/2 sacks, a breakthrough season that established McCoy an elite defensive tackle.
DT Stacy McGee (Oakland): Coming off a solid rookie season, the Muskogee product compiled 15 tackles in 15 games last season that included five starts. McGee will back up veteran Antonio Smith, who signed with Oakland, but the 2013 sixth-round pick is entrenched on the depth chart.
FB Trey Millard (San Francisco): A seventh-round draft pick, Millard was placed on the injured reserve list, still working his way back from a knee injury he suffered while in college.
RB DeMarco Murray (Dallas): Injuries have always been the key variable. Murray played in 14 games last season to rush for a career high 1,121 yards and seven touchdowns. He also compiled 53 receptions to develop into a two-way threat. He’s missed eight games his first three seasons, but when healthy he’s rushed for 2,681 yards.
LB Corey Nelson (Denver): A seventh-round pick, Nelson seized an opportunity when injuries mounted in camp and made the Broncos’ 53-man roster as a weakside linebacker who will also play a key role on special teams.
RB Adrian Peterson (Minnesota): After becoming the 28th running back in NFL history to reach 10,000 career yards rushing, Peterson this season can move into the top 15 all-time, leapfrogging names like John Riggins and O.J. Simpson. Entering his eighth season, Peterson rushed for 1,266 yards in 14 games last season.
WR Jalen Saunders (NY Jets): The fourth-round pick is one of three receivers the Jets drafted, all fighting for roster spots in addition to several young receivers invited to camp.
OT Donald Stephenson (Kansas City): After serving as a backup his first two seasons, Stephenson inherited the starting right tackle job but then was given a suspension for failing the NFL’s substance abuse policy. In his two seasons in his hometown, Stephenson has appeared in all 32 games with the Chiefs, including 14 starts.
WR Kenny Stills (New Orleans): A fifth-round pick, Stills was a steal. A big-play threat, Stills hauled in 32 catches his rookie season. His 20.0 yards-per-catch average led the NFL. After a solid debut, Stills is in the starting lineup opposite veteran Marques Colston. No longer limited to third-down snaps, Stills could have a breakout season.
P Tress Way (Washington): After being cut by the Bears, Way hooked up with Washington and won its punting job, for now. In the preseason, he had an impressive showing with four punts for a 45.3-yard average and a 43.3-yard net over the final two preseason games.
RB Damien Williams (Miami): The rookie earned the No. 3 spot on the depth chart behind Knowshon Moreno and Lamar Miller, beating out veteran Daniel Thomas, the K-State product whose career is now in limbo.
OT Trent Williams (Washington): The fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft, Williams is entrenched as the Redskins starting left tackle after developing into one of the best “blind side” blockers in the NFL. Selected to the Pro Bowl, Williams has started 55 games for the Redskins, including all 32 games the past two seasons.
OU players who were cut
WR Lacolton Bester (Houston): Among eight receivers battling for five roster spots, Bester recorded only one reception in preseason but a strong camp showing could land him a spot on the practice squad after he was one of the Texans final cuts.
OT Cory Brandon (Arizona): In his fourth season, with his third team, Brandon was on the Bears’ practice squad two years ago and was briefly activated without appearing in a game. He signed with the Cardinals and hopes to be re-signed to the practice squad.
RB Brennan Clay (Denver): The unrestricted free agent caused a stir in camp with his trash talking and all-out, physical style but was cut. It was a tough roster to crack with Monte Ball entrenched as the starter backed up by Ronnie Hillman and C.J. Anderson.
LB Keenan Clayton (Arizona): Originally a fourth-round pick by Philadelphia, Clayton compiled 48 career tackles in 36 games in three seasons with the Eagles and Raiders. He wasn’t on an active NFL roster last season but was trying to revive his career with the Cardinals.
RB Roy Finch (New England): After an up-and-down career with the Sooners, Finch had a strong training camp. He didn’t make the final roster but has a good shot to be re-signed to the Patriots practice squad.
CB Jamell Fleming (Jacksonville): In his second season with the Jaguars, after two seasons with the Cardinals, Fleming faced stiff competition for one of the final two backup cornerback vacancies and wasn’t beaten out for the final vacancy.
CB Dominique Franks (Baltimore): He played in only 13 defensive snaps last season with the Falcons, but because of injuries he seized an opportunity in his first Ravens training camp. With cornerback Aaron Ross out for the season the Ravens’ depth has taken a hit. He was cut but the former fifth-round pick could resurface with the Ravens.
C Gabe Ikard (Tennessee): An undrafted free agent, the McGuinness product was competing for a shot on the 53-man roster but was waived after suffering a knee injury.
OT Bronson Irwin (Houston): The undrafted rookie signed late in the summer with the Texans and lasted until the final cut on Saturday which could be a sign the Mustang product will be re-signed to the Texans’ practice squad on Sunday.
DE David King (Cincinnati): He spent part of last season on the Bengals’ practice squad, which puts him back in the competition for a roster spot but once again failed to make the 53-man roster. Another season on the practice squad would allow him to stay in the mix if he’s resigned by the Bengals on Sunday.
WR Jaz Reynolds (Tennessee): An undrafted free agent, Reynolds is one of a dozen receivers in camp. He was a long shot to grab one of the five or six receiver spots but is still hoping to land a practice roster spot.
DT Casey Walker (Carolina): An undrafted free agent, Walker spent most of last seasons on the Panthers’ practice squad. He was cut on Saturday but once again should land a spot on the practice squad, hoping to eventually join former OU teammate Frank Alexander in the Panthers’ D-line rotation.