Undrafted Wildcats find NFL homes following the draft

May 1, 2016, 3:00 PM
Arizona Wildcats defensive lineman Reggie Gilbert warms up before facing in the first half of an NC...
Arizona Wildcats defensive lineman Reggie Gilbert warms up before facing in the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Boulder, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

University of Arizona safety Will Parks and linebacker Scooby Wright III were both drafted during the final day of the NFL Draft. With the conclusion of the draft, other Wildcats have now signed as undrafted free agents.

Here is a list of the other Arizona players that have found NFL homes.

Reggie Gilbert, DL

Former Arizona defensive lineman Reggie Gilbert has signed a free agent contract with the Green Bay Packers.

Gilbert played in 57 career games at Arizona, and was one of the four senior team captains in 2015. Gilbert finished his collegiate career with 144 total tackles and 14 sacks.

With the abrupt decision by B.J. Raji to retire, Gilbert has a solid opportunity to force his way into the rotation on the Packers defensive line. Packers general manager Ted Thompson did draft Kenny Clark, a defensive lineman from UCLA with the team’s first-round pick, but one of Green Bay’s biggest needs entering the draft was obtaining as many linemen as possible.

Cayleb Jones, WR

Arizona’s leading receiver in receptions (55) and receiving yards (904) is heading to the City of Brotherly Love.

Jones compiled four 100-yard games, including snatching four catches for a season-high 182 yards and a touchdown in the Gildan New Mexico Bowl. Jones’ 1,923 total yards and 128 total receptions for his Wildcat career both ranked 10th-most in school history.

Jones is among three receivers the Philadelphia Eagles signed after the draft, the other two being Hunter Sharp from Utah State and Marcus Johnson out of Texas. The former Wildcat joins an inexperienced receiving corp with Rueben Randle and Chris Givens as the most senior pass catchers.

David Richards, WR

Fellow Wildcat wide receiver agrees to sign with the Atlanta Falcons.

Richards secured 109 receptions for 1,204 yards and 11 touchdowns during his time at Arizona. Richards posted his best season in his senior year, putting up 547 yards and scoring six touchdowns.

Atlanta has one of the best receivers in the league in Julio Jones, but after Jones, it’s a little questionable. The Falcons signed free agent receiver Mohamed Sanu in the offseason, but Sanu, along with the team’s remaining receivers of Justin Hardy, Devin Hester and Eric Weems, may not prove to be quarterback Matt Ryan’s liking. Atlanta did draft fellow Pac-12 receiver Devin Fuller from UCLA, but Richards could potentially force his way into the rotation ahead of an aging Hester and Weems.

Jared Baker, RB

Baker is staying in Arizona and agrees to become a Cardinal.

Bakers joins the explosive backfield of David Johnson, Chris Johnson and Andre Ellington. The former Wildcat finished his senior season leading the team in rushing and touchdowns with 798 yards and nine touchdowns.

While it’ll be interesting to see how Baker fits into the Cardinals’ “win-now” mode, his skill set is not to be ignored. Baker averaged 6.1 yards per carry and 10.5 yards per reception in 2015.

Lene Maiave, OL

Maiave joins a Seattle Seahawks team in desperate need to replenish its offensive line.

Maiave started all 13 games in 2015 at right tackle for the Wildcats. Maiave was a key unit in helping Arizona grind out an average 222 yards per game on the ground, good for third in the Pac-12.

Seattle drafted two offensive lineman in the first and third-rounds of the draft. Although the Seahawks were ranked third in rush yards, putting up 141.8 per game, Russell Wilson was sacked 45 times last season, which ranked 26th in the league.

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Undrafted Wildcats find NFL homes following the draft