Westerman playing for the Jets in September 2009
No. 93 Buffalo Bills
|Date of birth:February 21, 1985|
|Place of birth: Brooklyn, New York|
|High school: Ft. Lauderdale (FL) Aquinas|
|Undrafted in 2009|
|Debuted in 2009 for the New York Jets|
|Roster status: Active|
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 5, 2013
Jamaal Akeem Westerman (born February 21, 1985) is an American football linebacker for the Buffalo Bills of the National Football League (NFL). He was signed by the New York Jets as an undrafted free agent in 2009. He played college football at Rutgers.
Westerman played high school football in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at St. Thomas Aquinas High School before moving to Brampton, Ontario. In Brampton, he attended Notre Dame Secondary School, he started in every season he played. After his time in Brampton, he received three scholarship offers from National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) colleges before accepting one from Rutgers. Westerman was considered one of Rutgers' best defensive linemen and was named to the Second–team All–Big East team two times. In the 2009 NFL Draft, Westerman went undrafted and signed with the New York Jets. He debuted with the Jets on September 13, 2009. During his career he has also been a member of the Miami Dolphins and Arizona Cardinals.
Westerman was born in Brooklyn, New York, on February 21, 1985. He and his family moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where Westerman began his high school career at St. Thomas Aquinas High School. Following his freshman season, he moved again, this time to Brampton, Ontario, and enrolled at Notre Dame Secondary School. Westerman started every year he was there and led both the team and league in tackles and sacks. After graduating from Notre Dame in 2004 he was considered a two-star prospect by Rivals.com. Rutgers, Boise State and Central Michigan all recruited him and all offered him scholarships. He eventually accepted Rutgers' scholarship offer.
After redshirting in 2004, Westerman made a quick impression on the Rutgers coaching staff after recording six tackles in two games to begin 2005. In the Cincinnati game, Westerman recorded a sack on quarterback Dustin Grutza which forced a fumble.
Before the 2006 season, Westerman was involved in a car accident with teammates Willie Foster and Corey Hyman. Westerman and Foster were uninjured while Hyman required two stitches in his forehead. On September 29, against South Florida, Westerman sacked quarterback Matt Grothe for a five yard loss. After the month of September, Westerman had eight tackles and two and a half sacks. Through eight games, Westerman was the team leader in sacks with six. Against Connecticut, Westerman blocked a punt and recovered a fumble by Connecticut quarterback D. J. Hernandez. Both the punt and fumble recovery were returned for a touchdown. Westerman also recorded two and a half sacks in the game. By the final game in the season, Westerman and defensive end William Blackford had a combined 59 tackles, 16 tackles for a loss with 10 sacks. In the Texas Bowl against the Kansas State Wildcats, Westerman sacked quarterback Josh Freeman twice and recovered a Freeman fumble. Westerman was named second–team All–Big East following the season along with teammates Brian Leonard, Cameron Stephenson, Pedro Sosa, Jeremy Ito, Ramel Meekins, Devraun Thompson, Ron Girault and Courtney Greene.
During spring practice, Westerman and two other starter defensive linemen missed the annual intersquad scrimmage due to injuries. In Rutgers' 59–0 win over Norfolk State, Westerman recorded one sack on quarterback Casey Hansen. Against Syracuse and South Florida, Westerman recorded two sacks which gave him six for the season. Following the season, Westerman and Rutgers earned a bid to play in the International Bowl against Ball State. The game was played in his hometown of Toronto. According to Westerman he received numerous questions from teammates about Toronto, including "What's the weather like?"
Beginning in March 2008, Rutgers attempted to convert Westerman to defensive tackle, so he could replace the departed Eric Foster. However, Westerman ended up playing defensive end during the season. Against Morgan State, Westerman blocked a punt and recovered the loose ball. Westerman suffered a torn biceps against Louisville and was forced to sit out the rest of the season which included a bowl game. Despite his injury, he led Rutgers with six sacks on the season.
Westerman ended his collegiate career with 26 sacks, 141 tackles and 45 tackles for a loss. His career sack total ranked him third highest in Rutgers school history.
New York Jets
Westerman was signed by the New York Jets as an undrafted free agent on April 27, 2009. On June 9, 2009, Jets head coach Rex Ryan said that he expected Westerman to make the team's final roster. He ended up making the final roster as an outside linebacker and recorded two tackles and a sack in his debut against the Houston Texans on September 13. On October 9, 2011, Westerman recorded 5 tackles along with 2 sacks against the New England Patriots but in a losing effort while the Jets lost 30–21.
On September 1, Westerman was claimed off waivers by the Arizona Cardinals. After making just one tackle in five games for the team, he was waived on November 20.
On December 4, Westerman signed with the Indianapolis Colts.
Westerman's brother, Jawann, walked onto the Rutgers football team as a wide receiver after Westerman encouraged him to do so. His other brother, Jabar Westerman, was a first round draft pick of the BC Lions in the 2012 Canadian Football League college draft and is currently a starter at defensive end for the team.
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