Where are they now?: A look back at Wildcats recently drafted into the NFL
In honor of the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft happening tonight, here’s a look at the last five UA football players to be drafted into the NFL and where they are now.
Will Parks (Safety)
Parks was drafted in the sixth round (219th overall) by the Denver Broncos in 2016 and still remains on the Broncos roster today. While attending Arizona, Parks was apart of “the winningest stretch in Arizona football history from 2012-2015” according to Arizona athletics. Throughout his college career Parks totaled 53 games, 31 starts, 197 tackles, four interceptions and four bowl games.
Parks was able to earn the backup strong safety and special teams role on the team after getting drafted. He made his regular season debut as a Bronco in week one of the 2016 NFL season. The Broncos played the Panthers that day and ended up wining 21-20. In week three of that same season, Parks recorded his first career interception after picking off Andy Dalton of the Cincinnati Bengals.
One of the highlights of Parks’ career so far came against the Saints when Parks recovered a blocked extra point and returned it for the game-winning score in week 10 of the 2016 season. In October of 2017, Parks earned his first NFL start against the Kansas City Chiefs. In his two-year career so far, Parks has recorded 73 tackles, one fumble recovery and two interceptions, according to denverbroncos.com.
Scooby Wright III (Linebacker)
Scooby Wright III got drafted to the Cleveland Browns in the seventh round in 2016. Wright was selected 250th overall, making the draft by just six spots. Wright was one of the most well known football players during his time as a Wildcat. He earned the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year award in 2014 as a sophomore. His final season at Arizona was cut short due to injuries and was only able to play in three games that year.
On September 20 of 2016, Wright was waived from the Browns and then signed to their practice squad the next day. He then made the switch back to Arizona but this time to the Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals signed Wright off of the Browns’ practice squad on December 13, 2016. Wright moved around from the Cardinal’s practice squad to active roster several times to where now he is on the active roster. Wright recorded five total tackles in the 2017 season with the Cardinals.
Ka’Deem Carey (Running back)
The former star running back broke just about every school record imaginable while at Arizona including rushing for 100 yards for 16 games in a row, reaching the 4,000 yard career rush yards marker and becoming UA’s all-time rushing leader. Carey was selected in the fourth round of 2014 draft (117th overall) to the Chicago Bears.
In week 13 of 2015 Carey scored his first NFL rushing touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers and in December of 2015 he recorded first receiving touchdown. Carey has three touchdowns in his NFL career and 443 rushing yards. After suffering a wrist injury in August of 2017, Carey was placed on the Bear’s injured reserve list. Unable to recover smoothly, he was released by the Bears in early September of 2017. Carey is currently a free agent.
Shaquille Richardson (Cornerback)
Richardson played for Arizona from the 2010-2013 seasons. Richardson was drafted in the fifth round of the 2014 draft by the Pittsburgh Steelers. But he has had a roller coaster ride since then.
Richardson was soon cut by the Steelers and picked up by the Chiefs in 2015. After getting waived by the Chiefs in the same year, Richardson took his talents to the Canadian Football League. There he played for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2015.
After a short time in Canada he returned to the NFL and was on the rosters of the Arizona Cardinals, Tennessee Titans and Carolina Panthers all in the span of two years. However, Richardson was cut and decided to then return back to Canada to play for the Calgary Stampeders from 2016-2017.
Finally, in 2018 Richardson was able to land a spot on the Oakland Raiders in 2018 and is still there today.
Marquis Flowers (Linebacker)
The 6-foot-3, 250-pound former linebacker for UA got drafted in 2014 to the Cincinnati Bengals. Flowers who played at Arizona from 2010-2013 played in a total of 50 games collecting over 270 tackles, 7.5 sacks and one defensive touchdown. Flowers played for the Bengals from 2014-2016 but was traded in August of 2017 to the New England Patriots. During his time in the NFL, Flowers has amassed 47 career tackles and 3.5 sacks. Flowers was also able to participate in the 2018 Super Bowl with the Patriots.
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