Oct 10, 2013; Louisville, KY, USA; Rutgers Scarlet Knights defensive back Jeremy Deering (18) breaks up a pass intended for Louisville Cardinals wide receiver Michaelee Harris (2) during the second half at Papa John
The Oakland Raiders reached their 90 man training camp roster capacity on Monday, signing a safety to add to their defensive back depth as they signed a released UDFA from the New England Patriots early this afternoon to boost their ranks to an official 90 players.
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Former Rutgers safety Jeremy Deering was signed by general manager Reggie McKenzie following Deering’s release from the Patriots, adding a player who played both offense and defense during his collegiate career before transitioning to safety full time for his senior year.
Deering did it all while at Rutgers, playing running back, wide receiver, and safety in addition to returning kicks as a college player. Because of that Deering has quite the collegiate stat line; finishing his collegiate career with 130 rushes for 578 yards and two touchdowns as a running back, 21 catches for 415 yards and one touchdown as a running back/wideout, 41 kickoff returns for 1,100 yards and one touchdown along with 45 tackles (28 solo), and one interception as a safety. Making it safe to say that Deering did whatever he was asked by the coaching staff and then some.
The 6-foot-1, 209-pound Deering moved to defense for just one season, transitioning to safety and registering 39 tackles (22 solo) and one interception while playing good enough to draw the attention of the Patriots despite being released earlier this month.
It will be interesting to see where the Raiders employ Deering, but expect them to be looking at his contributions on special teams the most as the team looks to bring on a kick returner. A jack of all trades in college, it will be most interesting to see if Deering tries to catch on at any position possible or if he continues the career move that was placed upon him at Rutgers on the defensive side of the ball. Deering is an intriguing UDFA prospect, but because of his lack of consistency at a given position don’t expect him to crack the 53 man roster while he tries to find his calling in the pros.