|A closer look at the seven rookies the Patriots signed on Thursday||05.10.12 at 7:58 pm ET|
The Patriots announced the addition of seven rookie free agents on Thursday who will take part in rookie minicamp this weekend at Gillette Stadium. Here’s a thumbnail look at each one of them:
Running back Brandon Bolden, Mississippi: The 5-foot-11, 215-pound Bolden finished his collegiate career ranked second in school history in both total touchdowns scored (33) and rushing touchdowns (27), third in all-purpose yards (3,681) and fourth in rushing yards (2,604).
Defensive lineman Marcus Forston, Miami: The 6-foot-3, 300-pound Forston was injury-free during his freshman season at Miami, finishing with 17 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, and three quarterback sacks. After that, it was all downhill. His 2009 season was cut short due to an ankle injury, while his 2011 season, which began with a four-game suspension due to NCAA infractions, ended after he underwent surgery for a torn MCL. He also had shoulder surgery prior to the start of the 2010 season, but he still played in 13 games with 12 starts that year, and registered 37 total tackles, 3.0 sacks and one interception.
Defensive lineman Justin Francis, Rutgers: The 6-foot-3, 270-pounder posted very good numbers over the course of his college career (106 tackles, 22 tackles for loss and 12 sacks), culminating with 60 total tackles, 5.5 sacks, one fumble recovery, one interception and five passes defensed as a senior.
Tight end Brad Herman, Iowa: The 6-foot-5, 253-pounder had his best season as a senior, finishing with eight catches for 92 yards and a touchdown in 12 games (including three starts). He’s described by Pro Football Weekly as having “intriguing measurables, good straight-line speed and outstanding leaping ability.”
Wide receiver Matt Roark, Kentucky: A 6-foot-5, 214-pounder, Roark had 54 catches for 584 yards and a touchdown in four seasons with the Wildcats, including 36 receptions for 349 yards as a senior. In addition to his work as a wide receiver, he’s spent a lot of time on special teams. (Going into his senior year, he blocked six kicks in his career, five extra points and a field goal.) In addition, he led Kentucky to its first win over Tennessee since 1984 when he filled in at quarterback and completed four-of-six passes for 15 yards and rushed 24 times for 140 yards.
Offensive lineman Jeremiah Warren, South Florida: A 6-foot-3, 336-pound offensive lineman, he’s displayed plenty of positional versatility, having played left guard and left tackle. He was named to the All-Big east second-team, and he had a pre-draft workout with New England offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia.
Offensive tackle Markus Zusevics, Iowa: Zusevics is a 6-foot-5, 303-pounder out of Iowa who likely fell out of the draft after tearing his pectoral muscle while performing on the bench press at the combine. He started 26 straight games at right tackle for Iowa in his last two years with the Hawkeyes, and was honorable mention All-Big ten as a senior.
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