Eason, McNeal and Claxton sign contracts

The Denver Broncos Wednesday signed three draft choices, including defensive tackle Nick Eason, defensive end Bryant McNeal and center Ben Claxton - two of the team's three fourth-round selections, and one of Denver's two fifth-round picks in this past April's NFL Draft. The Broncos have now signed five of this year's 10 draft choices.

Eason, 6-3, 301 pounds, was the Broncosí second of four fourth-round draft picks (114th overall). As a three-year starter at Clemson, he started 35 of 47 games, recording 153 tackles (87 solo) with 15 sacks for -128 yards, 30 stops for losses of 194 yards and 38 quarterback pressures. Additionally, he caused and recovered a pair of fumbles, and deflected six passes. Eason graduated from Clemson in August, 2001 with a degree in Sociology, and is presently working on his masterís degree in Human Resource Development. Born Nicholas Eason on May 29, 1980, he resides in Lyons, Georgia.

McNeal, 6-4, 248 pounds, was selected by the Broncos' with their third fourth-round pick (128th overall), and joins his former Clemson teammate, Eason. A two-year starter for the Tigers, McNeal recorded 156 tackles (89 solo), 21 sacks (-147 yards), 46 quarterback pressures, five forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries in 48 career games (25 starts). Born Bryant Ashley McNeal on July 13, 1979, he resides in Swansea, S.C.

Claxton, 6-2, 301 pounds, was selected with Denver's first of two fifth-round draft choices (157th overall), but was the second fifth rounder to sign with the team (Adrian Madise on 6/17). A mainstay on what was regarded as one of the nation's best offensive lines at Mississippi, Claxton anchored a front wall that allowed the fewest quarterback sacks of any team in the Southeastern Conference over the last four years (50 total, Georgia is second with 84). He played in 44 career games for the Rebels, while making 37 starts. Ben Zachariah Claxton was born July 30, 1980.

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