The Green Bay Packers agreed to deals with 15 college free agents following the conclusion of the 2014 NFL draft, NFL sources have confirmed to Press-Gazette Media.
Here is a quick glance at those undrafted players who will join the Packers’ nine draft picks at next week’s rookie orientation camp in Green Bay.
DE/OLB Denico Autry, Mississippi State (6-4 3/8, 273)
Autry played on a NJCAA national championship team at East Mississippi Community College and was an All-American before transferring to Mississippi State. Started 23 of 26 games in two years and finished with 73 tackles (16 for a loss) and six sacks. He also forced three fumbles. Autry was second on the team with 9½ tackles for a loss last season in starting in all 13 games. Ran a 5.07 time in the 40 at his March pro day with 29 ½ vertical, 9-7 broad jump and 14 bench reps.
LB Jake Doughty, Utah State (6-0, 227)
Doughty, who started 27 consecutive games to finish his collegiate career, was the defensive MVP in the Poinsettia Bowl. His 148 total tackles (including 30 for a loss) last season were second in NCAA Division I FBS and fourth-most in history of the Mountain West. Ran a 4.56-second time in the 40-yard dash at his pro day with a 33-inch vertical and 24 bench reps.
LB Jayrone Elliott, Toledo (6-3, 255)
Will convert from a 4-3 defensive end to outside linebacker in Packers’ 3-4. A one-year starter, Elliott led the Rockets in sacks the past two seasons (15 total) and was third on the team with 70 tackles, including 14 for a loss. Ran a 4.75 time in the 40 with 31 vertical and 18 bench reps.
OL John Fullington, Washington State (6-5, 301)
Although the Cougars haven’t been known for their offensive linemen, Fullington was a versatile component of Mike Leach’s air-raid offense. He’s started at both tackle spots during his college career and played right guard during his sophomore year. Likely projects interior in pros. Ran a pedestrian 5.39 time in the 40 at his pro day, but countered with 30 bench reps.
DL Carlos Gray, North Carolina State (6-3, 296)
Surprised many by coming out for the draft after his redshirt sophomore year with the Wolfpack. Mainly a rotational reserve during his collegiate career, Gray had 23 tackles and 2½ sacks in 11 games with four starts as a redshirt junior. He ran a 5.20 time in the 40 at his March pro day with only 21 bench reps, a 27 1/2 vertical and 9-2 broad jump.
LB Adrian Hubbard, Alabama (6-6, 252)
A junior entrant into the draft who received his degree. Hubbard started 26 of his last 27 collegiate games at “Sam” linebacker for the Crimson Tide with 74 tackles (including 16.5 for a loss) and 10 sacks. He ran a 4.69 time in the 40 with 34½-inch arms and 9¼ hands. He didn’t press, run shuttles or 3-cone drill at the combine because of a deltoid strain. Seen as inconsistent. Described by draft pundit Nolan Nawrocki as having “a quirky personality, inflated opinion of his ability and carries a sense of entitlement that could be difficult to manage and require a patient position coach. … Has upside if the light bulb comes on.”
OL Jordan McCray, Central Florida (6-3, 322)
Ran a 5.49 time in the 40 at his pro day with 33 bench reps and a 27½ vertical. Started 27 games over his last two seasons (18 right guard and nine at right tackle) and was a first-team selection to the All-American Athletic Conference first team. Same school that produced Josh Sitton in 2008.
S Tanner Miller, Iowa (6-1, 211)
A three-year starter at free safety and former teammate of Packers cornerback Micah Hyde and defensive lineman Mike Daniels at Iowa. Miller finished his career with 222 career tackles and 10 turnovers generated (seven interceptions, three forced fumbles). He also tied Iowa record with a 98-yard interception return for a touchdown in a 2011 win over Northwestern. Ran at 4.59 time in the 40 at his March pro day with 35 ½ vertical and 10-3 broad jump. Had 13 reps on the bench press.
RB Rajion Neal, Tennessee (5-11, 212)
Ran a 4.57 time in the 40 at his pro day with a 38-inch vertical and 9-11 broad jump. Started games in each of his last three seasons before jumping into the role full-time as a senior and having his most productive season (214 carries for 1,124 yards and 12 touchdowns).
TE Justin Perillo, Maine (6-4, 250
Perillo reportedly close the Packers over a similar offer from Detroit. He was featured on the Big Lead's pre-draft video “Diary of a Draft Underdog” (http://shar.es/SirIF). A three-year starter for the Blackbears, Perillo caught 39 passes for 490 yards and four touchdowns as a senior. He ran a 4.76 time in the 40 at his March pro day with 30½ vertical jump, 9-1 broad jump and 19 bench reps.
RB LaDarius Perkins, Mississippi State (5-7 3/8, 195)
An undersized running back who was disappointed in not being taken. “Headed to Green Bay in the a.m. with a big chip on my shoulder,” he tweeted on Saturday night. Ran a 4.46 time in the 40 at the combine with 31 arms and 9 5/8 hands. A two-year starter at Mississippi State, he previously backed up Indianapolis RB Vick Ballard. He finished his career second in all-purpose yards at the school (4,253) and fifth-most rushing yards (2,554). He also handled kickoff returns earlier in his career and was heralded as one of the most versatile players in school history. Perkins was more productive as a redshirt junior (205-1,024-8) than a senior (137-542-2) partly due to a sprained ankle that hobbled him the entire season. Had 23 bench reps with 35½ vertical and 10-4 broad jump. Only did positional drills at his pro day.
DL Mike Pennel, Colorado State-Pueblo (6-4 1/4, 332)
A Scottsdale (Ariz.) Community College product who played five games with Arizona State in 2012 before being suspended twice in less than a month by coach Todd Graham. He was suspended indefinitely after a Twitter rant and transferred to Division II Pueblo where he had 36 tackles (six for a loss) and three sacks. Was originally listed at 363 pounds on the school’s website. Ran a 5.23 time in the 40 at the combine with 33 3/8 arms and 9 7/8 hands. Had a 27 vertical and 8-8 broad jump at his March pro day. Definitely a run-stuffer in the Packers’ two-gap scheme.
QB Chase Rettig, Boston College (6-2, 214)
A four-year starter who played in a number of systems with a revolving door of position coaches. He competed 55.2 percent of his passes for 8,263 yards with 52 touchdowns and 39 interceptions. Rettig, who was 20-30 as a starter, ran a 4.97 time in the 40 at his pro day with 34 vertical and 9-4 broad jump. Packers reportedly sought out Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch, who opted to join the Chicago Bears instead.
LB Joe Thomas, South Carolina State (6-0 1/2, 227)
Thomas was honored as the MEAC defensive player of the year after registering 116 tackles and 7½ sacks last year. He was a member of FCS’ No. 1-ranked defense and second-ranked scoring defense. Ran a 4.70 time in the 40 at his April pro day with a 38 vertical, 9-9 broad and 22 bench reps. Opportunity is there with Packers’ unmet needs at inside linebacker. Had a pre-draft visit.
CB Ryan White, Auburn (5-10, 194)
White played both cornerback and safety during a collegiate career spent mostly as a reserve. He had 54 tackles with one interception in 14 games (two starts) as a senior. Played sparingly as a junior, but was the holder on field goals and extra points. Ran a 4.51 time in the 40 with 34 vertical, 10-5 broad jump and 13 bench reps.
Other college free agents who will participate in the Packers’ rookie orientation camp next week on a tryout include: RB James Sims (Kansas) and Chris Rycraw (Ouachita Baptist), ILB Nate Dreiling (Pittsburg State), OL Jamal Ellis (Newberry), K Vincenzo D'Amato (California), P Paul Layton (Temple) and DL L.T. Tuipolutu (Utah).
Memphis quarterback Jacob Karam tweeted on Sunday that he's been invited to participate in the Packers' rookie camp. Karam (6-0, 205) played originally at Texas Tech before transferring to Memphis.
He completed 64.2 percent of his passes in 2012 for 1,895 yards, 14 touchdowns and three interceptions, but lost the Tigers' starting job this past season to redshirt freshman Paxton Lynch.
In one other note, James Madison linebacker/defensive lineman Jordan Stanton has accepted an undrafted deal with the New York Giants. He was originally scheduled to be in Green Bay next weekend on a tryout.
*Times and measurements for non-combine invites available through NFLDraftScout.com