Four Buffs Sign Free Agency Deals

For just the second time since 1989, no Colorado Buffaloes were taken in the NFL Draft. But by Sunday evening, four players had signed free agent contracts.

Defensive tackle Brandon Dabdoub will be joining former Buff Chris Brown after signing with Tennessee. Fellow d-lineman Matt McChesney signed with St. Louis, running back Bobby Purify inked a deal with San Francisco and offensive tackle Sam Wilder signed with the Dallas Cowboys, his hometown team.

Wide receiver Ron Monteilh had not yet signed with teams as of 8:30 p.m. Sunday evening. Players with Buff ties — linebacker Marques Harris and quarterback Craig Ochs — both signed with the San Diego Chargers. Harris played at Southern Utah last season after transferring from CU. Ochs left Colorado in 2002 and played two years at Montana.

Wilder and Purify were the only two CU seniors invited to February's NFL Combine in Indianapolis. Like his teammates, Purify had hoped to hear his name called during the weekend's draft, but is grateful for a shot at making an NFL team via free agency.

"It adds fuel to the fire that I wasn't drafted, but at the same time, I feel fortunate and blessed that I get the opportunity to take my game to the next level," Purify said.

The Cowboys gave Wilder a personal tryout and had told him they were interested in the 6-5, 303-pounder. He grew up a Cowboys fan.

McChesney said he wanted to get drafted, but likes his chances with the Rams.

"I'm just happy I'm getting a shot," McChesney said. "I thought I was going to (get drafted), but I didn't. I'm over it.

"St. Louis didn't draft any defensive linemen, so I‚m pretty much like a draft pick for them. Now, it's all up to me."

Dabdoub, from Louisiana, likes the idea of heading back South to try and make the Titans' roster.

"This is all I wanted — just the opportunity to show them what I have, and it's also close to some of my family," Dabdoub said. "It's eight hours from home in New Orleans and my brother's just two hours away in Memphis."

Harris said he fielded offers from Jacksonville, Dallas and Green Bay, but that San Diego offered a three-year contract worth the most money. He said he's looking forward to being reacquainted with Ochs.

"It'll be nice knowing somebody there, and Craig is a great guy and a great person, so it always helps going to a new place to know a person like him," Harris said.

The last time no Buffs were drafted was 2001.

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