Undrafted in April, appreciated in December
December, 19, 2013
By Kevin Weidl | ESPN.com
AP Photo/David RichardLions rookie TE Joseph Fauria has made the most of his opportunities this season.When the final selection of the NFL draft is announced, all 32 teams begin a mass scramble in an attempt to recruit the undrafted prospects on their short list. Coaches and front-office personnel get on the phones to sell their organization to players and agents alike.
Every year, a handful of players go undrafted but find a way onto a roster before turning into valuable contributors. Their careers range from strong reserves all the way to Pro Bowlers such as Kurt Warner, Tony Romo, Wes Welker and Antonio Gates -- and free-agent, Hall of Fame success stories that include John Randle.
Why do prospects get overlooked? There are multiple reasons and scenarios: durability, size or speed deficiency, character red flags, production drop-off and, at times, the level of competition. Texans RB Arian Foster is a more recent example of how a player with his type of skill set can slip through the cracks and go undrafted.