It was a busy Wednesday for the 2023 Battlehawks. After seeing Mataeo Durant and Freedom Akinmoladun begin their journey back to the NFL earlier this week, Four more Battlehawks received invites to NFL teams Rookie Mini-Camp. Eric Magwood, Lukas Denis, Hakeem Butler and Kevin Atkins have all been invited to attend the Bills, Falcons and Steelers Mini-Camp in the next several days.
Atkins and Denis were fan favorites on the defensive side of the ball for St. Louis. Atkins attended Fresno State for Six years before earning an invite with the 49ers in 2022, he appeared in 10 games (9 starts) with 14 tackles and 1 sack during the season. After a standout career at Boston College Denis spent time with the Bucs, and then had spent some time in the IFL with the Massachusetts Pirates. Denis would play 10 games (7 starts) for Donnie Abrahams Defense totaling 37 Tackles, 2 Interceptions, and 1 Sack becoming one of the XFL’s most dependable playmakers on Defense.
What started with a “DM” to Coach Anthony Becht led to one of the best seasons in the 2023 XFL season for Hakeem Butler. Butler came to St. Louis as a supplemental draft pick in January quickly becoming on the Battlehawks and the XFL’s premier wide outs. Butler totaled 51 receptions for 599 Yards and 8 Touchdowns in 2023 and will now be joining the Steelers for their Rookie Mini-Camp in an effort to extend his NFL career.
Reserve Offensive Tackle Eric Magwood also received an invite to Buffalo Bills Rookie Mini-Camp. Magwood who is a veteran of the Arena Leagues, was a late signing in the Battlehawks training camp, who ended up starting two games for the Battlehawks after the suspension of Jaryd Jones-Smith in Week’s 4 and 5 putting together a solid performance grade in his two starts in 2023.
XFL players cannot sign contracts with NFL clubs until May 15th, following the league championship game. With Coach Anthony Becht stating that he’d love to coach a whole new team in 2024, with Six players getting opportunities to attend rookie minicamp, and more rumored to be receiving interest Becht may have that opportunity next season. Regardless, with the XFL presenting itself as a league of opportunity, it seems several Battlehawks players took full advantage of the 2023 season and are in the process of achieving their NFL dreams.
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