The New Jersey Generals wasted no time putting the USFL’s new roster expansion rule to good use. Early Thursday morning, the team announced the addition of five new players. The Generals have signed Charleston QB Guy Myers, Miles College/UAB RB Kingston Davis, Washington State, DE Hercules Mata’afa, Jacksonville State LB Jalen Choice, and Texas CB Darion Dunn. New Jersey also announced the release of LB Tim Walton. So another move could be in the offing.
On Wednesday, the USFL announced that team active rosters would expand by two from 38 to 40. And that the individual practice squads would increase from seven to ten players. The long-overdue change allows teams to try and counter depth issues for the second half of the season.
In the first five weeks of the USFL season, teams like the Philadelphia Stars and Michigan Panthers have gone into games dressing only one quarterback because of injuries and limited roster space. The Stars have played two games in a row with Case Cookus as their only active signal-caller. Original starter Bryan Scott has been on the team’s practice squad while recovering from injuries.
USFL teams have also called upon natural punters like Matt Mengel and Michael Carrizosa to assume field goal duties. Subsequently, both those players were released when they struggled in that area.
The expansion of two players to the active roster is a band-aid solution to what could have become a more significant problem in the second half of the USFL season. Some injured players were released regularly because of the lack of roster space. At the same time, other injured players have been transferred to the practice squad, which has acted as a storage area for inactive players.
This coming Sunday, the North-leading 4-1 New Jersey Generals will face the 1-4 Houston Gamblers. New Jersey will be looking to extend their current win streak to five games. As the team inches closer to clinching a playoff spot, the new group of recruits could help strengthen the Generals’ chances.
New Jersey Generals Add Five New Players
QB Guy Myers is a 6’6, 215lb Virginia native who originally started his college career at Northeast Oklahoma before transferring to Charleston University. Myers is a raw late bloomer with a strong arm. He was eligible for the 2022 NFL Draft but went undrafted. Guy Myers started to emerge as a playmaker late in his college career. He finished the 2021 season with 1,817 yards passing, 12 touchdowns, and six interceptions. On the ground, he rushed for 502 yards and nine scores. Myers has similar traits to Generals’ QB De’Andre Johnson. So if an injury were to occur, Myers could be in line to assume a similar role.
RB Kingston Davis, a 6’0 225lb three-star recruit out of Alabama, started his college career at the University of Michigan. Because of his size, the Wolverines wanted to move Davis to fullback. Instead of accepting the position change, He sat out a year before eventually landing at UAB. The former Last Chance U star was dismissed from the Blazers program back in 2018 after being arrested on domestic violence charges.
At Miles College, Kingston Davis began to see his potential realized. In 2021, he had an outstanding campaign, rushing for 721 yards and six touchdowns on 128 carries. His 5.6 yards per rush led the team, and his rushing yards were top-5 in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Davis also added 102 yards receiving.
Kingston Davis had three 100-yard rushing performances during the season, including a career-high 170 yards and two touchdowns at Lane, which earned him SIAC Player of the Week honors.
The Generals are loaded at RB, but Davis could be quality insurance in New Jersey’s run-heavy attack as the season progresses.
DE Hercules Mata’afa is a familiar name for some football fans. The Polynesian 6’2 252lb edge rusher was a first-team and defensive player of the year in the Pac-12. He went undrafted in 2018 but signed with the Minnesota Vikings and spent three seasons on and off their roster. He recorded 2.5 sacks during his time there. In 2021, Hercules had brief stints on the Jaguars and Washington practice squad before being let go towards the tail end of the season. The Generals defense has really come on of late. But the one area they can use a boost is pass rush production. The team has only five sacks on the season. Mata’afa can help in this area.
LB Jalen Choice is back home playing in Alabama. The Jacksonville State standout is a Tuscaloosa native. The 6’2 234lb Choice was a 2nd Team All-OVC player at JSU. He spent some time playing for the Sea Lions in the Spring League in 2021. Jalen Choice was in the USFL Draft pool in February. He should give the Generals much-needed depth behind standouts Chris Orr and D’Juan Hines.
CB Darion Dunn is a 6’1 192lb cornerback who was a standout All-FCS player and student at McNeese State before transferring to play for the Longhorns at the University of Texas. In 2021, Dunn appeared in 12 games with one start. He finished the campaign with 22 tackles and two pass breakups. Dunn was a Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll member last spring.
The former high school WR ran track in high school and was a Louisiana state champion in the 110-meter hurdles. Dunn also had success as a track athlete at McNeese state.
Dunn went undrafted in the 2022 NFL Draft, and however, he recently participated on a tryout basis in rookie minicamp for the New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals. This is the second 2022 NFL draft-eligible player that the Generals’ have signed out of this new group of five.
Dunn could be playing his pro football game as soon as this Sunday in Birmingham.