San Diego Coach Marty Schottenheimer telephoned Stephen Cooper, the former University of Maine linebacker, to offer a free-agent contract minutes after the draft ended on Sunday. Cooper accepted the offer and will depart for a minicamp in a week.
"I kind of figured it might happen this way," said Cooper from his home in Wareham, Mass. "I'm a little disappointed I didn't get drafted, but I'm excited to go to San Diego. It's a place with a big future."
Cooper a 6-1, 238 pound linebacker was convicted of having anabolic steroids in his possession hurting his Draft chances.
"San Diego was one of those teams that was not real deep at linebacker," said Cooper, 23. "It's a place where I can earn a spot."
"San Diego and Coach Schottenheimer had been talking to my agent (Buddy Baker) for a while," said Cooper. "They showed a lot of interest."
Linebacker Cooper Added
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