NEC-related Rumblings from NFL Rookie Mini Camps

Najee Harris answers a question during the live program at 2016 #NECFB Social Media Day – MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford, NJ)

The first wave of NFL rookie mini camps unfolded this past weekend and there was some good news for a pair of NEC alumni.

Wagner’s Najee Harris, who was a captain during the 2016 season, entered the Oakland Raiders’ mini camp on a tryout basis and left with a three-year NFL free agent contract.

Harris was active in the Seahawks’ linebacking corps this past fall, recording 44 tackles (30 solo). The 6-foot-2 225-pounder logged 4.5 hits for a loss as well as four quarterback hurries. The versatile Harris was credited with five pass break-ups last season and his lone interception came in a victory over NEC champion Saint Francis U.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Bay, Saint Francis U alumnus Lorenzo Jerome was busy doing work at the San Francisco 49ers’ rookie mini camp. The four-time all-NEC first team safety signed a UDFA contract only hours after the completion of the 2017 NFL Draft.

Jerome went undrafted despite receiving rave reviews from analysts such as the NFL Network’s Mike Mayock and ESPN’s Todd McShay. The positive comments were warranted considering that Jerome made 18 interceptions during a collegiate career that included All-America honors at two different positions (DB, KR).

Jerome was responsible for three takeaways (2 INT, FF) in the Reese’s Senior Bowl in April, only one week after earning the MVP Award at the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl. The 5-foot-11 native Floridian apparently continued such behavior with the 49ers this past weekend. Jerome reportedly made a highlight-reel worthy interception during 11-on-11 drills. He also became the subject of a story written by Sacramento Bee reporter Matt Barrows.

 

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