Six Terps Agree to Free-Agent Deals with NFL Teams
April 27, 2009
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - As many as 13 players from last season's Maryland football team will have a shot at making an NFL roster this summer.
Six former Terps agreed to free-agent contracts Monday, according to each of the players.
Those who have either signed or are expected to sign deals in the coming days, include:
Played in 28 career games, mostly as a reserve; Posted 58 career tackles
Played in 39 career games, including 24 starts (18 at left tackle/six at right tackle)
Started 48 of 50 career games played at DE or DT
Member of watch list for 2008 Nagurski Trophy
A three-year starter at center; started the final 39 games of his career
Played in 43 career games, including 23 starts
Muhtadi played in 19 games over the last two seasons, seeing time mostly as a reserve.
Randolph was a durable offensive lineman who started most of his final two seasons at right tackle. He played in 41 career games, including 24 starts, all at right tackle.
The Terps had five players drafted over the weekend, the most since 2004 when they also had five selected.
Maryland was also tied with North Carolina for the most players drafted among Atlantic Coast Conference schools. Clemson, Georgia Tech and Wake Forest had four apiece.
WR Darrius Heyward-Bey was selected seventh overall by the Oakland Raiders on Saturday.
CB Kevin Barnes (third round - Washington Redskins), LB Moise Fokou (seventh round - Philadelphia Eagles), OL Jaimie Thomas (seventh round - Indianapolis Colts) and TE Dan Gronkowski (seventh round - Detroit Lions) were taken Sunday.
Last season, DL Dre Moore was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and six players signed free agent contracts after the draft, with four of them - OL Andrew Crummey, CB Isaiah Gardner, TE Joey Haynos and LB Erin Henderson - making an opening day roster.
RB Lance Ball also earned a tryout and signed with the St. Louis Rams before ending the 2008 season on the Indianapolis Colts roster.
With the free agent signings, nearly half of last season's 30-player senior class will have a chance to make an NFL roster this summer. Others may also sign in the coming days.
Terps NFL Draft Notes:
The Terps currently have 25 players on NFL rosters (not including 2009 draftees or free agent signees).
The Terps have had 22 players drafted during Ralph Friedgen's tenure as head coach.
Maryland has had at least five players taken in the opening seven rounds of the NFL Draft six times in school history (1953 - 6; 1954 - 5; 1975 - 6; 1984 - 5; 2004 - 5; 2009 - 5).
Heyward-Bey is the second Terp wideout to be taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. Gary Collins was taken with the fourth overall choice in the 1962 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. Jermaine Lewis was the last Maryland wide receiver to be chosen (fifth round of 1996 NFL Draft - Baltimore Ravens).
Heyward-Bey is the highest drafted Terrapin since Vernon Davis was selected sixth overall by San Francisco in the 2006 NFL Draft.
Heyward-Bey is the 15th Terp to be drafted in the first round.
Eric Barton was the last Terp to be drafted by the Oakland Raiders. Barton was taken in the fifth round of the 1999 NFL Draft. Delbert Cowsette, currently an intern on the Maryland staff, was the last Terp to be drafted by Washington (2000).
Melvin Fowler was the last Maryland offensive lineman to be chosen in the NFL Draft (third round in 2002 by Buffalo), though Jared Gaither was taken in the fifth round of the 2007 NFL Supplemental Draft by Baltimore and Stephon Heyer (Washington) and Andrew Crummey (Cincinnati) are currently on rosters.