Although North Carolina football has struggled early on in 2018 with an 0-2 start to the season, there are still some former Tar Heels succeeding in the NFL. As Week 1 came to a close on Monday, here are five Tar Heels who showed up during the first week:
After playing the past four seasons with the Detroit Lions, Ebron was released last March and signed a two-year, $15 million deal with the Indianapolis Colts within a week. In the Colts' loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, Ebron pulled down four receptions for 51 yards, while catching the first touchdown of the season for the team. He should be a reliable second option at tight end for the Colts this year, as they look to improve on a 2017 season that saw just four wins.
Bernard has been a steady option over the past five seasons for the Bengals. The running back has averaged 4.2 yards per carry in the NFL, as well as catching passes for 2,071 career yards. However, in Week 1, he only had one carry for negative yardage, as second-year running back Joe Mixon stepped up with a bigger role in the offense. Whether his one rush was an outlier for the season or Bernard's usage will continue to drop remains to be seen in the upcoming weeks.
In his rookie year with the Dallas Cowboys, Switzer was used as both a kick returner and wide receiver. He was traded to the Oakland Raiders in the offseason, then traded again to the Pittsburgh Steelers 13 days before he debuted for the team in Week 1. Switzer played primarily on special teams against the Browns, where he gave the Steelers good field position by getting past the 25-yard line every time the ball was kicked his way. On offense, he rushed once for eight yards and was targeted by quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in the slot one time. He gave the Steelers a viable option on special teams, where he should continue to return kicks and punts.
After opting not to return for his fourth year of college in favor of moving to the NFL, Trubisky was drafted second overall by the Chicago Bears in 2017. He has shown growth and development since that night. He took the reins early in 2017, making his first start for the Bears in the team's fifth game last season. He came out strong in Week 1 of 2018, completing 23 of 35 passes but was unable to close out the game against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers orchestrated an incredible comeback, bringing his team from 20 points down for the 24-23 win, spoiling Trubisky's day. But the second-year quarterback showed promise.