New Orleans Saints: Mark Herzlich A Potential UFA Target?
By Keith Null
With the last official day of the NFL lockout winding down, teams will be gearing up for what is sure to be chaos over the next several days. Teams can trade, sign undrafted and drafted rookie free agents, and negotiate with all free agents — the only problem is it will be crammed into a span of just a few days.
Drafted rookies are ironically not the priority for most clubs to sign immediately, instead it is the undrafted pool that will garner the most attention tomorrow. Every team will be in “scramble mode” as they attempts to land key rookies the feel can make an impact on their roster.
College players go undrafted for a variety reasons, but it’s not because of a lack of talent to be sure. There are several big name players that will be available, and here are a few the Saints may target tomorrow.
Clemson strong safety DeAndre McDaniel has already agreed to a deal with the Saints, McDaniel posted on his twitter account that he was headed to New Orleans as the newest member of the team.
It’s a huge pickup for the Saints who may be losing several backup safeties in free agency this year. McDaniel carried a third round grade according to NFL Draft Scout and was rated as the best available undrafted free agent in this years crop of talent by many close the game.
1. Boston College OLB, Mark Herzlich
Herzlich, the 2008 ACC Defensive Player of the Year, could have been a first round pick had he decided to enter the 2009 NFL draft. Instead he opted for another season at Boston College, unfortunately it was a season that was never destined to happened as he was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma.
Ewing’s Sarcoma is a rare from of bone cancer, which affected his left leg. He decided to undergo surgery and chemotherapy, seven months later he was declared cancer free. Unfortunately NFL teams where scared off and Herzlich went undrafted.
But Herzlich has come a long way , spending most of the off season training at IMG Academies in Bradenton, Florida under strength coach Jeff Dillman. He is stronger, faster, and more agile now then perhaps even before his diagnosis.
New Orleans has plenty of questions at the outside linebacker position — Scott Shanle, Kawika Mitchell, and Danny Clark — may all not return to the team in 2011.
Herzlich can come in and immediately compete for a roster spot and it seems unlikely that he will remain on the market for too long. So far he has not signed with any NFL team, but seems to weighing over several options.
"For everyone I have not signed with anyone yet and am still making my decision. Thank you for support and I will give official word tomorrow. — Herzlich via twitter"
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