East Rutherford, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - Two former Portland State teammates will square off as part of an FCS contingent trying to win Super Bowl XLVII on Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium.
Pro Bowl tight end Julius Thomas will start for the AFC champion Denver Broncos, while DeShawn Shead is a backup strong safety and special teams player for the NFC champion Seattle Seahawks.
The two players were teammates for one season at Portland State in 2010.
The Broncos' roster also includes three other starters who played on the FCS level, safety Mike Adams (Delaware), linebacker Paris Lenon (Richmond) and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (Tennessee State). Adams will be playing less than a 20-minute drive from his hometown of Paterson, N.J.
Wide receiver Greg Wilson (Fordham) is on the Broncos' active roster, while offensive tackle Paul Cornick (North Dakota State) is a member of the practice squad.
FCS member North Dakota was still in Division II when offensive guard Chris Kuper played there.
For the Seahawks, quarterback Tarvaris Jackson (Alabama State), wide receiver Bryan Walters (Cornell), offensive guard Paul McQuistan (Weber State) and cornerback Jeremy Lane (Northwestern State) are reserves.
Defensive end Kenneth Boatright (Southern Illinois) and cornerback Chandler Fenner (Holy Cross) are on the injured reserve list. Rookie offensive guard Jared Smith (New Hampshire) is an injured member of the practice squad.