Years later, the legacy left by that specific team is the incredible amount of defensive talent that eventually moved on to the NFL.
Currently, nine players from that 2008 defense are still on NFL teams, and collectively, they're getting PAID. Those nine players combine to make $81,130,000 in average yearly salary in the NFL, averaging $9,014,444 each. Five of those nine players make at least $12 million per year.
Here's a look at the 2008 USC defensive players still in the NFL. Not all of these players were contributors for the Trojans in 2008, but it's an impressive collection of talent:
|Clay Matthews||LB||$13,200,000||Green Bay|
|Nick Perry||LB||$12,000,000||Green Bay|
*Note: Malik Jackson, Nick Perry and Wes Horton did not play in 2008. Malik Jackson eventually transferred to Tennessee. Shareece Wright played two games in 2008 before missing the rest of the season with a medical redshirt after a hairline fracture in his neck.
Here's a look at some of the stats for these players in 2008:
- Rey Maualuga: 79 tackles, 2.5 TFL, 2 INT, 1 Def. TD
- Brian Cushing: 73 tackles, 10.5 TFL, 3.0 sacks, 1 INT
- Clay Matthews: 57 tackles, 4.5 sacks, 9.0 TFL, 2 FF, 2 PD
- Everson Griffen: 18 tackles, 6.0 TFL, 4.5 sacks
- Jurrell Casey: 12 tackles, 2.0 TFL
- Shareece Wright: 8 tackles