In case you missed it over the weekend, three FIU football players took the next step into the NFL. Defensive tackles Isame Faciane (#99 below right) and Greg Hickman (#8) joined teams in the NFC North Division and could face each other twice each season if they make their respective rosters.
Faciane signed a free agent contract with the Minnesota Vikings where former FIU defensive line coach Andre Patterson is the defensive line coach. Faciane also joins former FIU point guard Nick Taylor in Minnesota. Taylor, who impressed at FIU's Pro Day in 2012, is a defensive back for the Vikings. Hickman was invited to the Detroit Lions rookie camp. The Lions along with the Houston Texans had their scouts attend the most FIU practices over the last year.
FIU cornerback Sam Miller was invited to the Washington Redskins rookie camp this week.
Should these three Panthers stick in the NFL they would join eight other former Panthers currently on NFL rosters: Antwan Barnes (Jets), Johnathan Cyprien (Jaguars), Anthony Gaitor (Buccaneers), Caylin Hauptmann (Seahawks), T.Y. Hilton (Colts), Junior Mertile (Giants), Taylor (Vikings), Tourek Williams (Chargers).