Arizona Football

Arizona’s All-NFL Undrafted Team

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After playing nine seasons in the NFL, Antonio Pierce is now an ESPN analyst

After playing nine seasons in the NFL, Antonio Pierce is now an ESPN analyst

With former Arizona quarterback Matt Scott not getting drafted last week, I researched — thanks to the UA football media guide — those who were undrafted yet went on to be part of a team at least three years in the NFL.

That list includes 21 players, featured by former Washington Redskins and New York Giants linebacker Antonio Pierce. He played nine seasons in the NFL after nobody selected him in the 2001 NFL Draft. He was a Pro Bowler in 2006 and won a Super Bowl with the Giants following the 2007 season.

No former undrafted Arizona quarterback went on to play more than two years in the NFL. Bill Demory, who was on the New York Jets’ roster in 1973-74, is the closest. Then again the Wildcats do not have a history of quarterbacks who have played in the NFL (Nick Foles was the first UA quarterback last season to be drafted by an NFL team in 27 years).

If Scott is able to land on the Jacksonville Jaguars’ 2013 roster as an undrafted free agent, he can be encouraged by some of the success stories of the 21 former UA players who were snubbed on draft day but lasted at least three years on NFL rosters.

Nine have lasted at least five years on NFL rosters, including Pierce.

Josh Miller, a punter with Pittsburgh, New England and Tennessee, lasted 12 seasons in the NFL. Pierce and offensive lineman Bob Whitlow (Washington, Detroit, Atlanta and Cleveland from 1960-68) are next with nine. Rickie Harris, a defensive back with Washington and New England, lasted eight years in the NFL from 1965-72.

In order to round out Arizona’s All-NFL Undrafted team featured with this blog I was forced to include some Wildcats who were on NFL rosters for only two seasons (Demory, defensive end Joe Young (1960-61 with Denver), defensive tackle Joe Drake (1985 with Philadelphia and 1987 with San Francisco), and linebackers LaMonte Hunley (1985-86 with Indianapolis) and Ray Wells (2003 with Tenneessee and 2004 with San Francisco).

No place-kicker is listed because all who have played in the NFL were drafted.

Site publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner


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