Second Draft: 10 Teams That took Advantage of Undrafted Free Agents
There are 255 players taken over the three days in the NFL draft. There are a lot of players left out of the draft that are very good. Some of these guys will go on to have very long and productive careers.
Although rare some of these men, like John Randle, will go on to have Hall of Famer careers.
These guys weren't taken first overall or even last overall. So we will be looking at the top 10 teams who took advantage of these undrafted free agents.
Honorable Mention: Minnesota Vikings
Notable Signings: Ryan Perrilloux(QB)
I had to mention this signing because everyone made an uproar over the Vikings not drafting a QB.
Perrilloux has had his troubles (getting kicked off LSU) but has natural talent. He finished last season with 2,345 yards and 23 touchdowns. With some coaching and time he could become an NFL starter.
#10: Chicago Bears
Notable Signings: Freddie Barnes (WR), Brandon Minor (RB)
Barnes set an NCAA single-season record with 155 receptions as a senior, for 1,770 yards and 19 TDs.
He also had a good year in 2007 as a sophomore with 82 catches. He had a productive career with 298 catches, 3,299 yards, and 30 touchdowns.
Minor didn't have a great NCAA career at Michigan but he was a four star recruit. He finished last year with 502 yards and eight touchdowns.
#9: Tennesse Titans
Notable Signings: LeGarrette Blount (RB)
They shipped out power back LenDale White and quickly filled that void. Blount is a first round talent that will be getting paid next to nothing.
He of course had his issues this year but the kid can play football. In just two years he amassed 1,084 yards and 19 touchdowns. This was largely done in one year.
He can come in and help now for the Titans.
#8: Dallas Cowboys
Notable Signings: Matt Nichols (QB), Scott Sicko (TE)
Nichols is a small school quarterback but with some time on the sidelines could develop into a good player. He had a monster year with 3,830 yards and 33 touchdowns.
For his career he had 12, 616 yards and 95 touchdowns.
They went back to the small school well with Scott Sicko. He originally said he wouldn't signed but changed his mind.
He had 57 catchers, 725 yards, and five touchdowns on the year. That upped his career totals to a very impressive 160 catches, 2,014 yards, and 22 touchdowns.
#7: Indianapolis Colts
Notable Signings: Tim Hiller (QB), Javarris James (RB)
Hiller wont need to start anytime soon with Peyton Manning at the helm. He can sit back and learn the game from an all-time great.
Hiller has good size, 6'4" and 229 pounds, to become an NFL starter. He threw for 3,249 yards and 23 touchdowns in his senior year.
James had a solid but not great career at Miami (FL). He had some injury issues but showed flashes of being a very good back.
If he can put it all together he could turn out to be a good NFL back.
#6: New Orleans Saints
Notable Signings: Brandon Carter (OG), Brandon Sharpe (DE)
The Saints grabbed two very good players from Texas Tech. Carter was a three-year starter and earned All-Big 12 and All-America honors.
He is a physical, aggressive blocker in the middle. He fell due to his lack of athletic ability. His poor footwork also bothered NFL scouts.
Sharpe was second in the nation with 15 sacks in '09. Outside of his passing rushing skills he is pretty limited.
He did not produce at all in his other season. He isn't good against the run and he also isn't athletic enough to play outside linebacker.
#5: Pittsburgh Steelers
Notable Signings: Ciron Black (OT), Andre Dixon (RB)
Black was a four-year starter at LSU at left tackle. He won the 2009 Jacobs Blocking Trophy, given annually to the SEC's best lineman.
He dropped due to his footwork and mobility. Some NFL scouts also thought he would be better as a guard. Black not getting drafted was a huge surprise to many.
Dixon was a solid starting back at UCONN and could add some depth to the Steelers.
#4: Houston Texans
Notable Signings: Tyler Sheehan (QB), Adam Ulatoski (OT) , Malcolm Sheppard (DT)
Sheppard was a productive three-year starter and has some pass-rush ability. He is a bit on the small side at 6'2" and 285 pounds. His ability to hold up in the middle of the line worried NFL teams.
Ulatoski was a four-year starter and three-time All-Big 12 selection. NFL scouts worried about his lack of athletic ability and mediocre footwork.
NFL teams also worried about how he would fare against speedy outside rushers.
Sheehan will need to get used to a pro style offense. With some time learning a system he could pan out.
#3: San Francisco 49ers
Notable Signings: Jarrett Brown (QB), Shay Hodge (WR), Keaton Kristick (LB)
Brown had a very good year at WVU. His only year starting was impressive but he needs to prove he can do it more than one year. He adds depth to the 49ers team.
Hodge led the SEC with 70 receptions in 2009. Those 70 grabs went for 1,135 yards and eight touchdowns. He also had eight TD catches as a junior and six as a sophomore.
He has good size 6'1" and 209 pounds and speed. NFL teams stayed away due to his raw route-running. They were also worried how he would handle press coverage.
Kristick was a good two year starter. He earned All-Pac-10 after his senior season. He had 95 tackles in 2009 and made 82 in 2008. He has good size at 6'3" and 234 pounds. He lacks speed side-to-side and has some injury issues.
#2: Buffalo Bills
Notable Signings: Joique Bell (RB), Naaman Roosevelt (WR), Donald Jones (WR), Antonio Coleman (DE)
Coleman led the SEC with 10 sacks in 2009 and had 24.5 in his career.His lack of height (he's 6-1) and weakness against the run led most NFL teams to think he only could be an outside linebacker in a 3-4 set.
He has never played linebacker and has no coverage skills. That made drafting him a big a risk.
Jones and Roosevelt had good NCAA careers and with some time could become good NFL players.
Bell had one of the best careers you could have, 6,728 rushing yards 88 touchdowns, and adds to an already stacked backfield.
#1: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Notable Signings: Jevan Snead (QB), Hunter Lawernce (PK), Sergio Render (OG)
Snead alone makes them the winner. They got a talent who was at one time thought to be a first rounder.
He had a great sophomore year with 2,762 yards, 26 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions. He followed that up with a shaky junior year, 2,632 yards 20 touchdowns, and 20 interceptions.
The amount of interceptions he throws is what made teams shy away. He can become the guy we look back and go "Wow did we undervalue this guy."
Render was a four-year starter for the during his career. He is known for his run-blocking ability. NFL scouts shied away due to his lack of consistency as a pass-blocker.
Lawerence has a very good leg and should be a mainstay as a kicker for a long time. He doesn't miss many kicks and can kick under pressure.