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Skins sign UDFA DL from Vols


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http://citadel4.ezboard.com/fcpndhardcorefrm1.showMessage?topicID=7940.topic

If nothing else, the kid bulked up to 280lbs. from 255. Also, I wonder whether Lewis saw something in him when he was up taking a look at both Henderson & Haynesworth. Maybe with good coaching he could become a serviceable DE to rotate with Smith/Coleman/Leverette/Wynn.

Time will tell!

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great, a guy who is 280 but is neither a skilled rusher nor a strong run defender.

didn't we just have some guys on the team like Jackson last year in Dorian Boose and Michael Bankston?

where are these guys now? :gus:

one step forward, two steps back.

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Bankston was old, oft injured, and never should have been signed. That's one of Schotty's great ideas. Boose, this kid had done nothing since being drafted by the Jets 3-4 years ago, so it's probably safe to say he didn't have either the heart... skill.... or motivation to succeed at this level.

This kid is straight out of college and more than likely hungry to make an NFL team. With Lewis and DL coach attention, he COULD (<------- Being the key word) become serviceable.

I draw attention to these UDFA signings because I remember the luck we had last year with players such as Skaggs and Brandt.

I smashed my fortune telling 8-ball on Sat. afternoon, so I can't be certain just what this kid will do for us. :laugh:

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the difference was that Brandt at 6'4 and 309 was big enough to project to his position in the NFL and really the knock on him was that he didn't have enough of an athletic upside to be considered a guard candidate as well.

as a pure center, he was expected to go in the 5th round but unceremoniously fell out of the draft.

I didn't see Jackson's name on any list rating him that high.

In addition, you look at his measurables and from the bio he seems to be a player that once bulked up to 280 has lost some of his quickness and feel for the game that he had at linebacker.

Reading between the lines, it appears the switch to DE might have been a mistake for him.

Usually you take a DL and start from a position of having a guy that either stops the run or rushes the passer well and has to learn to round out his game.

Jackson seems to need to develop a game from scratch on the DL.

That is too much work at the NFL level. The coaches don't have 5 years to turn this guy into a productive player.

And for a lot of these guys it is a shame because they COULD perhaps become NFLers, just not quickly enough in the fast-paced world of today's league where you get 1-2 years to show what you have unless you are a top pick and then you get more time because of the money invested in you.

That's just the way it is.

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Here you go Laurent....

http://www.knoxnews.com/kns/gv_football/article/0,1406,KNS_297_1102440,00.html

Spurrier helps UT reach draft record with 10 selections

By Gary Lundy, News-Sentinel sportswriter

April 22, 2002

Perhaps Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer should send a thank-you note to Steve Spurrier for helping to make Sunday an historic day for the Vols' football program.

The Washington Redskins' rookie coach selected two former UT players - cornerback Andre Lott (fifth round) and offensive lineman Reggie Coleman (sixth round) - on the second day of the NFL draft. Washington also signed undrafted defensive lineman Bernard Jackson of Tennessee as a free agent, said David Ware, who represents Jackson.

A total of 10 former Vols were drafted during the weekend, most ever for the school, and second most this year to the 11 drafted out of the University of Miami.

The irony of Spurrier, the former Florida coach, drafting two players from UT wasn't lost on the ex-Vols.

"When the Redskins called, it definitely caught me off guard,'' Lott said from his apartment in Memphis.

"It's going to feel kind of odd at first, me playing for coach Spurrier. After all those years of me being at Tennessee and playing against him at Florida, now we're on the same team.''

As for Coleman, he might have grabbed Spurrier's attention in December when he had the best game of his career against the Gators.

"However it happened doesn't matter - whether it was that game, or the fact the Redskins' offensive line coach liked me when he came to Knoxville on pro day,'' Coleman (6-foot-51/2 , 299 pounds) said.

"I just know coach Spurrier's not at Florida and I'm not at Tennessee and I'm glad they picked me, regardless of the round. Andre called me and it's good to know somebody else on the team when you are going into a new situation like we are.''

Spurrier obviously liked what he saw and heard last month when he stopped in Knoxville to check out the draft prospects from UT. Washington contacted Lott on Sunday and asked if he would be interested in playing for the Redskins. Five minutes later, a team representative called back and notified Lott he was the fifth-round pick.

With Fred Smoot and Champ Bailey entrenched as Washington's starting cornerbacks, Lott won't have an easy time earning playing time. The Redskins also took cornerback Rashad Bauman of Oregon in the third round. That means Lott most likely will have to make his mark on special teams and as a fifth defensive back in nickel and dime coverages.

"I'm definitely aware of the players they have there,'' Lott said. "But I feel good about where I'm going. Right after they drafted me, Fred Smoot called and told me he was going to take care of me. That made me feel comfortable and welcome on the team. The mini-camp starts Thursday and I can't wait to get started.

"I'm real excited about playing for (defensive coordinator) Marvin Lewis because everybody knows what kind of defense he had with the Ravens.

It's an aggressive style, which is what I'm used to.''

Three other Vols were drafted on Sunday: running back Travis Stephens (Bucs, fourth round), defensive back Teddy Gaines (49ers, seventh) and linebacker Dominique Stevenson (Bills, seventh).

Stephens (5-71/2, 192) is well aware that Jon Gruden built the Oakland Raiders' rushing attack around Charlie Garner, another diminutive running back from Tennessee. With Gruden now calling the shots as Tampa Bay's coach, Stephens is hoping he can become the same kind of running back for the Bucs that Garner was for the Raiders.

"Don't plan on redshirting,'' Gruden jokingly told Stephens shortly after selecting the former Vol.

Stephens and Gruden, a former UT graduate assistant, seemed to hit it off in their pre-draft interview session and during Sunday's phone conversation.

"He joked around some,'' Stephens said. "He's the kind of coach a lot of players like to play for. He asked me if I was ready to come down and catch some balls because they're going to throw to me.

"I'm looking forward to getting down there and running behind (Bucs lineman and former UT teammate) Cosey Coleman."

Gruden indicated to Stephens that the Bucs need immediate help at running back. Tampa Bay traded Warrick Dunn in the offseason, but did re-sign fullback Mike Alstott on Saturday. The Bucs have had good luck with middle- and late-round draft picks. At the end of last season, four Tampa Bay starters had been drafted in the third, fourth or fifth rounds in recent years.

"They were looking for a running back my size and a back like me,'' Stephens said.

"I got picked by a team that I really liked because they wanted to pick me. So the wait was worth it. After the third round went by, I knew my name would be coming up soon. It's a good situation for me and (Gruden) seemed very excited he drafted me.''

In the biggest pleasant surprise for a former UT player, San Francisco drafted Gaines (5-91/2, 175) in the seventh round.

"It was sort of a surprise and I'm real happy,'' Gaines said. "I was still watching the draft on TV and the 49ers called me three or four picks before it was their turn. They asked me a bunch of questions about my time at Tennessee. It's nice to get drafted. A lot of my teammates called to congratulate me.''

It was a mild surprise that fullback Will Bartholomew (5-111/2 , 240) wasn't drafted, but he signed a free-agent contract with the Denver Broncos.

"I talked to (head coach) Mike Shanahan and he said they only have one other fullback and they aren't going to take any more as free agents,'' Bartholomew said.

"I think Denver is a good place for me because they are looking to fill a void. The Broncos use their fullback a lot like Tennessee does. The fullback blocks a lot and catches passes out of the backfield, so it's a role I'm familiar with.''

The Broncos' first mini-camp is scheduled for the first weekend in May.

Wide receiver Eric Parker signed a free agent deal with the expansion Houston Texans. He'll join guard Fred Weary, who was picked in the third round.

As of late Sunday evening, two other former Vols, tight end John Finlayson and defensive back Tad Golden, were in the process of negotiating free-agent deals.

Gary Lundy may be reached at 865-342-6274 or Lundy@knews.com.

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"I'm definitely aware of the players they have there,'' Lott said. "But I feel good about where I'm going. Right after they drafted me, Fred Smoot called and told me he was going to take care of me. That made me feel comfortable and welcome on the team. The mini-camp starts Thursday and I can't wait to get started.

Good old Freddy. Man that guy is awesome. Im so glad all those mistakenly questioned his charachter last year allowing him to drop to us. The more and more I hear about this guy he seems like the second coming of Darrell Green. Darrell's always been a class act.

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