Drew joins former NCCU teammate with Lions
Make that two Eagles who have become Lions.
Former N.C. Central defensive tackle John Drew signed a contract with the Detroit Lions on Friday, joining former NCCU defensive lineman Xavier Proctor in the Motor City.
Drew (6-2, 330) and Proctor (6-6, 272) were solid anchors for the Eagles’ defense a year ago.
But Drew especially was feared in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, where his explosiveness and girth commanded double-teams.
Lions coaches said Drew’s combination of size and speed is a rare package, Arkansas-based sports agent Chris Turnage said.
“They like his explosion and his athleticism,” said Turnage, who represents Drew. “He’s officially a member of the Detroit Lions.”
Drew had worked out for the Lions in recent weeks, but he pulled a hamstring to delay a would-be deal, Turnage said.
A big toe injury late in the 2012 season in the first quarter against eventual MEAC champion Bethune-Cookman also threatened Drew’s NFL dream. He was done for the season, having recorded 18 tackles, eight of them solo shots and five hits for losses along with blocking two kicks.
But the burly guy from Columbus, Ga., rehabbed hard and found a home in the NFL.
Detroit head coach Jim Schwartz got his first full-time job as a college coach at NCCU, working with the Eagles’ defensive backs during the 1991 season.