Did You Know? Mariner Football Facts!


Mariner has been through a lot in its illustrious fifty years as a school in Everett, Washington. Any football player would claim that the memories are endless.

Some memories didn’t stop at high school, though. Mariner Athletic Director Kyle Axelson said that four former Mariner students went on to become National Football League (NFL) players. Those four are KeiVarie Russell (Graduated 2012), Teyo Johnson*, Lamont Brightful (Graduated 1997), and Riall Johnson (Graduated 1996). 

The only of the four currently rostered is KeiVarae Russell. He was a running back at Mariner. He was drafted seventy-fourth overall back in 2016 by the Kansas City Chiefs. He has played twenty games since joining the NFL. His most recent stint has been with the Cincinnati Bengals. Since joining the team, he has only had one pass intercepted on defense and has made 22 combined tackles overall.

Brightful played in the NFL for six years as a cornerback with the Baltimore Ravens, Miami Dolphins, and New York Giants, before leaving the professional field and coming back home to Washington. He currently works as an elite sports performance coach in Richmond, Washington, at Power Alley Performance. In his career, he played thirty games and made one touchdown.

The Oakland Raiders drafted Teyo Johnson in the second round of the 2003 draft. He played tight end and racked up 26 yards and three touchdowns in his nine-year-long career. For his third season he played during, he was on the Arizona Cardinals (in 2005).

Last but not least, Riall Johnson, Teyo’s older brother, was considered one of the top prospects in the United States. He was drafted back in 2001 in the sixth round, 168th overall pick by the Cincinnati Bengals. He played defensive end and lasted three years in the league.

Johnson continued his football career though, playing in the CFL for the Toronto Argonauts the following year. In the NFL, he played 32 games with a result of 14-18-0. He made 18 solo tackles during his time with the organization.

All four former players are honored at Mariner High, having their professional jersey situated on the walls outside of the gymnasium at Mariner.


*Editors Note- Previously it was stated that Teyo Johnson had graduated, this is incorrect. Although he attended Mariner High School, he transferred prior to graduating.