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Four Pack Players Land On NFL Rosters

April 26, 2010
Ted Larsen and Willie Young were drafted in the sixth and seventh rounds, respectively, on Saturday during the final day of the draft, and Jerail McCuller and Toney Baker were signed to free-agent contracts the following day.

Larsen was picked up by the New England Patriots with the 205th overall pick. He’ll be backing up long-time center Dan Koppen who’s started for the Pats for the last seven years. He could also be used to add to depth behind either of the two guard positions.

Young was drafted eight picks later at 213th, six picks into the seventh round, by the Detroit Lions. He was the fourth defensive end from the ACC drafted.

McCuller signed on with the Eagles and Toney Baker, after foregoing his final season of eligibility, signed on with the Denver Broncos.
There’s been some discussion on the boards about the wisdom of Baker’s decision in light of the fact that he was not drafted, but at age 24, Baker’s window of opportunity to begin a career at the pro level was quickly closing. As we’ve seen plenty of examples of recently–most notably Ladanian Tomlinson at San Diego–running backs tend to hit a wall when they reach the 30-year mark. Had Baker come back for his sixth season, he would’ve entered the league at 25 with just five years to go before reaching the 30-year ceiling. One year may not seem like a huge difference, but assuming it would take Baker a couple of seasons to reach his peak production, that one year extra year on the second contract could be very valuable.

Good luck to all of State’s draftees and signees.

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