Better late than never as life here at Dove Valley is on a more serene pace this holiday week …
NFL Europa may have ceased to exist, but four of its products have new life on their professional careers after the Broncos signed them Monday. Each of the four does not count against the Broncos’ roster limit until teams must trim their roster to 65 players after the third full week of the preseason.
Offensive lineman Emmanuel Akah:
A native of London, England who ventured across the Atlantic for college … Played for the London Olympians of the British American Football League … Began the 2006 NFL Europe season with the Rhein Fire before being shipped to the Frankfurt Galaxy, where he remained in 2007 after the league changed names to NFL Europa … Was with the Miami Dolphins during the 2006 preseason.
Cornerback Bill Alford:
Will attempt to become just the second Vanderbilt alumnus to play for the Broncos, joining Jay Cutler … Went through the 2005 and 2006 preseasons with the Baltimore Ravens, but was released each year … Played the last two seasons for the Frankfurt Galaxy of NFL Europa.
Cornerback Kevin House:
Is the son of son of former NFL wide receiver Kevin House. The elder House spent seven seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, notching a pair of 1,000-yard campaigns before concluding his NFL stint with the Los Angeles Rams … The younger House played in 16 games for the San Diego Chargers over the 2002 and 2003 seasons but has not returned to the NFL for the regular season since, although he was in Seahawks camp for a spell in 2005.
Offensive lineman Cliff Washburn:
Moved from defense to offense during NFL-E’s 2005 camp while with the Frankfurt Galaxy … Was Teyo Johnson’s teammate in Hamburg this spring … Did not play football until 2002, when he followed four seasons on the basketball team at The Citadel with a year as a defensive end … Spent 2003 training camp with the Giants and was on the Bears’ practice squad later that season … Was back in Bears camp in 2005 but was released … Spent 2006 season with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League and saw action at left tackle.
And one more thing …
Upon my Monday return to Dove Valley after nearly three weeks away, fellow DenverBroncos.com staffer Kyle Sonneman gently lambasted me for not mentioning his 2002 role as the American public-relations contact for the Berlin Thunder in my blog entry about the demise of NFL Europa. Ben Hamilton, a member of that year’s Thunder, has a similar piece of jewelry.
A belated happy Canada Day, and an early happy Fourth of July to you.