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The six-month wait for NFL football ends tonight with the annual Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio.
The Jacksonville Jaguars and Las Vegas Raiders face off at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium at 8 p.m. ET.
While televised football is a feast for the eyes, Thursday night’s game won’t exactly be Chiefs vs Bills in the AFC Championship.
You’ll see many lesser-known players trying to build a roster, while the stars are playing limited snaps, if at all.
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But there’s always intrigue as the NFL preseason begins.
Three USFL players will be among those facing off Thursday night with quarterback Kyle Sloter for the Jaguars and cornerback Ike Brown and receiver Isaiah Zuber getting their shot with the Raiders.
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Sloter, who spent time with the Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Detroit Lions, Chicago Bears and Raiders, threw for 1,798 yards and nine touchdowns in his only season with New Orleans. Breakers.
“There’s a lot of history in this game,” Sloter said, according to Fox Sports. “It’s an honor to be able to play there.
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“It’s really cool to be back,” he added, referring to the Tom Benson Stadium. “It’s always nice to be in familiar territory. Mentally, I was able to imagine myself in some of the positions that I’m going to be in, just in my surroundings and knowing what it was like to be on that territory and in this stadium.”
Sloter should have ample opportunity to show off his skills as Trevor Lawrence, the NFL’s No. 1 pick of 2021, won’t play Thursday night. Sloter thinks his recent playing time will be an advantage as he tries to make the Jaguars roster.
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“I’m one of the few people who will be out there seeing the game action as recently as a month and a half ago,” Sloter said. “A lot of these guys are playing their first game from a year ago this time, where pre-season was the only time they [play]. Or they are rookies who have never played at this level before.
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“So I’m sure for a lot of guys the lights will be a bit bright and mistakes will be made. For others, some people go that far.”
Zuber led the USFL in receiving five touchdowns, and Brown had 16 tackles and two interceptions during the USFL season.
Jacksonville and Las Vegas enter the season with a new head coach.