Roster cutdown day in the NFL is a tough one, as it can mark the end of the road for many talented athletes. From rookies to veterans, nobody is safe. There’s also a unique category of players from alternative leagues, and although the number of players that fall into this category is small, it’s still worth documenting their attempts at making the NFL.
Reggie Begelton is a great example of this. Begelton was not selected in the 2016 draft following his collegiate career at Lamar University, a school in Beaumont, Texas, with an NCAA FCS (subdivision) football program. Instead of trying to get on an NFL roster right away, Begelton signed with the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders in 2017. His first two seasons in the league were promising, as he caught a total of 47 passes for 792 yards and 2 touchdowns during that span. Begelton also won the 106th Grey Cup with the Stampeders in 2018.
His best season came in 2019, when he caught 102 passes for 1,444 yards and 10 touchdowns. His 1,444 yards were the third-most for a CFL receiver that year. It was this performance that helped Begelton get a shot at his NFL dream, as he signed a reserve/future contract with the Green Bay Packers in January 2020. Even with the NFL preseason being canceled in 2020, he did enough at training camp to earn a practice squad spot. Begelton was elevated to the active roster for the Packers’ game against the Atlanta Falcons, then reverted back to the practice squad for the rest of the season.
Heading into 2021, Begelton had another chance to try and make the team. He used the opportunity to his advantage, catching 7 passes for 80 yards through the Packers’ three preseason games. Despite the effort, Begelton lost the last receiver spot on the active roster to Malik Taylor, an undrafted player out of Ferris State that the Packers originally signed in 2019. To the surprise of many, Begelton was not brought back on the practice squad, either.
Reggie Begelton is currently a free agent at the time of this article’s publication. Hopefully, he can find his way onto the practice squad or active roster of another team sometime during the 2021 season. If that doesn’t work out, it wouldn’t be shocking if he considered a return to the CFL.
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