Saturday, May 2, 2015

University of Albany's Parker Signs NFL Free Agent Deal With San Diego Chargers - UAlbany Sports 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Following Saturday’s NFL Draft, University at Albany tight end Brian Parker signed an undrafted free agent deal with the San Diego Chargers. With the signing, Parker became UAlbany’s 12th player to ink an NFL contract. Parker, a native of Henrietta, N.Y., totaled 1,006 receiving yards and nine touchdowns in his career at UAlbany. The 6’4 tight end was named Third-Team All-CAA in his senior season, totaling 500 receiving yards and five touchdowns on 39 receptions. A member of UAlbany’s squad from 2010 to 2014, Parker helped UAlbany win back-to-back Northeast Conference championships (2011-12) and to the program’s first NCAA Division I Playoff in 2011. Parker also played a key role in the Great Danes’ jump to the Colonial Athletic Association in 2013 and to 2014’s seven-win season. UAlbany has now had four players in the last three years sign NFL deals. Most recently, offensive lineman Kadeem Williams signed with the Arizona Cardinals following the 2014 NFL Draft and in 2013, Jon Morgan and Drew Smith signed free agent contracts with the Detroit Lions and Buffalo Bills, respectively. In 2007, Rashad Barksdale was taken in the sixth round of the National Football League Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles. Barksdale, who was the 201st player selected, marked the second UAlbany football player to be chosen in the NFL Draft. He was released by the Eagles and immediately signed by the Kansas City Chiefs off waivers. Barksdale became the first Great Dane to play in an NFL regular-season game on Oct. 7, 2007 against Jacksonville. Barksdale, a defensive back for the Arena Football League’s Kansas City Command in 2011-12 and currently on the Tampa Bay Storm roster, played just one season for the Great Danes as a cornerback. He came to the program as a walk-on prior to the 2006 campaign after earning two varsity letters as an outfielder on the UAlbany baseball squad. Barksdale, who was named to the Football Gazette mid-major All-America team, accounted for 39 tackles and three interceptions. Also in 2007, Andre Coleman and Jacob Hobbs signed as free agents with the San Diego Chargers and Philadelphia Eagles, respectively. Coleman, who spent three seasons on the Chargers’ practice squad and played during the 2009 regular season, was a consensus first-team mid-major All-America defensive end. Previously, offensive tackle Geir Gudmundsen joined the Buffalo Bills as a free agent in 2005. Split end Dan Gmelin (San Diego Chargers) and tight end Seth Thomas (Carolina Panthers) signed as free agents in 1997. Defensive end Matt Caliandro inked a free-agent deal with the Tennessee Titans the following year. Kurt Campbell was the first UAlbany player taken in the NFL Draft. He went in the seventh round to the Green Bay Packers in 2005. Campbell, a former UAlbany captain, also spent time with Oakland and Tennessee and was signed by the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders in May 2009. UALBANY NFL SIGNEES 1997 Dan Gmelin San Diego Free Agent 1997 Seth Thomas Carolina Free Agent 1998 Matt Caliandro Tennessee Free Agent 2005 Kurt Campbell Green Bay Drafted - 7th round 2005 Geir Gudmundsen Buffalo Free Agent 2007 Rashad Barksdale Philadelphia Drafted - 6th round 2007 Andre Coleman San Diego Free Agent 2007 Jacob Hobbs Philadelphia Free Agent 2013 Jon Morgan Detroit Free Agent 2013 Drew Smith Buffalo Free Agent 2014 Kadeem Williams Arizona Free Agent 2015 Brian Parker San Diego Free Agent

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