4 Beavs sign UFAC's; Hardin wins over Bears

BRANDON HARDIN

FOUR OSU BEAVERS have signed undrafted free agent contracts with NFL teams. Meanwhile, Brandon Hardin's selection as a Chicago Bears third round draft choice continues to make waves.

It's just not that often you see a player picked in the third round who lost his entire senior season to injury.

But the broken shoulder blade suffered by Brandon Hardin in August of 2011 didn't worry the Bears or other NFL teams.

Not when they saw what he did at the Beavs' Pro Day -- where he ran a 4.43 in the 40 and posted a 35 ½ vertical, and at the Workout Warrior Pro Day, where he turned heads with his shuttle and 3-cone times.

"This is a big, fast, dynamic, physical athlete," Bears general manager Phil Emery was quoted as saying of Hardin in the Chicago Sun Times.

And Hardin's measurables, 6-3 and 222 pounds with both bigger than average wingspan and hands, are the kinds of things NFL teams covet in a safety.

Chicago plans on playing him at their strong safety position.

"We do like the fact he has corner skills, he has been a cornerback," Emery said. "The thing we have noticed is he is very good at using his size and ‘physical-ness' and leveraging receivers. We see him helping us further is matching up against some of the tight ends we face."

Oregon State has become something of a pipeline for the Bears -- Hardin is the fourth Oregon State player in the last five years to be drafted by Chicago.

The Bears drafted DT Stephen Paea in the second round last year. They took S Al Afalava in the sixth round in '09. And they drafted LB Joey LaRocque in the seventh round in '08.

Meanwhile, Oregon State at last check had four players who signed undrafted free agent contracts:

WR James Rodgers – Atlanta Falcons
OT Mike Remmers – Denver Broncos
LB Cameron Collins – Miami Dolphins
P John Hekker – St. Louis Rams

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