FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — The 20 undrafted college free agents who have signed with the Atlanta Falcons have good reason to believe they’ll have a chance to play or even start.
One year ago, college free agents made 31 starts for Atlanta. The 2013 group included the team’s leading tackler, linebacker Paul Worrilow, who was undrafted from Delaware. Also linebacker Joplo Bartu of Texas State, who made 13 starts and was third in tackles. Offensive tackle Ryan Schraeder of Valdosta State started four games.
The Falcons focused on defense with seven of their nine picks in last week’s NFL draft. There were 12 offensive players, including some new options for quarterback Matt Ryan, in the class of college free agents announced on Monday.
The Falcons will have rookie minicamp Friday through Sunday.
The team signed five wide receivers, including Boise State’s Geraldo Boldewijn. Other receivers signed by the team: Arkansas State’s Julian Jones, North Greenville’s Freddie Martino, Toledo’s Bernard Reedy and Kansas State’s Tramaine Thompson.
Atlanta signed Syracuse running back Jerome Smith, Cornell quarterback Jeff Mathews and two Wisconsin tight ends — Jacob Pedersen and Brian Wozniak. Pedersen set a school record for tight ends with 17 career TD catches.
Fullbacks Maurice Hagens of Miami and Roosevelt Nix of Kent State and Tennessee center James Stone also signed.
The Falcons added two defensive linemen from the Southeastern Conference — Auburn defensive end Nosa Eguae and Kentucky defensive tackle Donte Rumph — and linebackers Brenden Daley of Hawaii, Walker May of Vanderbilt and Jacques Smith of Tennessee. Utah State cornerback Devonta Glover-Wright, South Carolina State safety Kimario McFadden and Pittsburgh punter Matt Yoklic also signed.
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