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Former Missouri stars sign undrafted free agent contracts

A host of former Tigers signed UDFA deals quickly after the NFL draft ended.

Josh Augusta
Derrick Forsythe (Rock M Nation)

Charles Harris ended up the only Missouri Tiger selected in the 2017 NFL draft, but almost the moment the draft ended, news began to leak about undrafted Tigers signing UDFA deals.

Josh Augusta to New England

Augusta was a four-year contributor for Missouri at defensive tackle, playing as a true freshman for a loaded defensive line in 2013 and recording between 16.5 and 22.0 tackles in each of the next three years. He finished his career with 20 career tackles for loss, four sacks, two pass breakups, and a glorious 2014 interception.

Throughout his career, Augusta became known as much for his size as his play-making ability. His weight ballooned well past 350 pounds heading into his senior season, and he has since dropped some of that excess. Still, he is a magnificent athlete for his size, and Mizzou used him in offensive sets at times in 2016. He finished the season with 10 carries and two rushing touchdowns, though his quest for a Piesman Trophy nomination was hindered by the fact that Josh Heupel didn’t ask quarterback Drew Lock to throw him any screen passes like I requested. Sigh.

Aarion Penton to Los Angeles

After backing up current Los Angeles Ram E.J. Gaines as a freshman in 2013, Penton was Missouri’s best cornerback for three straight years. He finished his career with 110 solo tackles, 22 assists, 8 tackles for loss, 10 interceptions, and 31 passes broken up. He scored on a pick six in Missouri’s 26-17 win over Vanderbilt last November, then recorded a key interception in the end zone two weeks later against Arkansas.

Penton doesn’t boast the size that NFL scouts have been increasingly looking for in recent years, but the skill set and athleticism are obvious.

Donavin Newsom to San Francisco

A class of 2012 recruit who was given the symbolic No. 25 jersey early in his career — a nod to the late Aaron O’Neal, also a St. Louis native — Newsom slowly grew into a role of leadership at Missouri. He recorded 4.5 tackles as a freshman, then increased his totals to 18.5, 52.0, and 59.5. Over his last two seasons, he made 14.5 stops behind the line, sacked the quarterback 5.5 times, and broke up six passes.’

Newsom was asked to play an uncomfortable role through parts of 2016, serving as much as a nickelback as an outside linebacker. At 6’2, 240 pounds, he is more suited for latter than former, but his athleticism and potential were enough for him to get a look.

Sean Culkin to the other new Los Angeles team

The Florida product and Thor lookalike caught 61 passes for 601 yards and two touchdowns over his four-year career. Injury issues held him back, but Culkin looks the part and will now look to land a permanent spot out west.

Jake Hurrell to Baltimore

Hurrell was about as error-free a long-snapper as you’ll see, and as far as punts are concerned, lord knows he had plenty of opportunities to prove himself.

Rickey Hatley to Houston

John Gibson to Seattle

Congrats and good luck to each.