Six seniors off the 2012 Clemson football team have signed free agent contracts with NFL teams. The list includes three offensive players, two defensive players and a specials teams player. Combined with the four members of the 2012 team who were drafted, 10 members of the 2012 Clemson team will be in camps in the coming days as NFL teams start mini-camps.
DeAndre Hopkins was a first-round draft choice of the Houston Texans, the 27th selection overall. He was the second wide receiver selected and one of just four “skill position” players taken in the first round.
Malliciah Goodman (Atlanta Falcons), Jonathan Meeks (Buffalo Bills) and Andre Ellington (Arizona Cardinals) were the other Tigers drafted. Meeks will join former teammates C.J. Spiller, Chris Hairston and Crezdon Butler on the Bills roster.
The six undrafted free agents include All-America center Dalton Freeman with the New York Jets, first-team All-ACC tight end Brandon Ford with the New England Patriots, Academic All-ACC receiver Jaron Brown with the Arizona Cardinals, top tackler Tig Willard with the Tennessee Titans, and kicker Spencer Benton, who kicked a national best 61 yard field goal in 2012.
Thirty-eight former Clemson players have made NFL rosters and played at least one NFL game after signing a free agent contract. That includes nine who have gone on to play at least five years in the NFL. Eighth have played at least 50 games.
That list is led by Jeff Bostic, a starting center on Clemson’s 1978 team that finished sixth in the nation. He played 14 years and 184 games in the NFL for the Washington Redskins and is the only former Tiger to play on three Super Bowl Championship games.
Other former free agents to play in at least 50 NFL games are Lamont Hall (94), David Treadwell (93), Steve Kenney (89), Vince Ciurciu (74), Ken Callicutt (66), Dan Benish (55) and Mike Barber (51).