NFL supplemental picks Unga, Price-Brent get golden opportunities

In Thursday’s supplemental draft, Chicago and Dallas gave up seventh-round picks in 2011 to add depth to their rosters. The Bears, selecting 12th in Round 7, chose BYU running back/fullback Harvey Unga. The Cowboys, selecting 30th, took Illinois nose tackle Josh Price-Brent. Northwestern (La.) State running back Quentin Castille and Truman State wideout Vanness Emokpae weren’t selected and are available to join any team as a free agent.

Harvey Unga is a good fit with the Bears, who had been relying on Jason Mckie at the tailback position for four of the past six seasons.
Harvey Unga is a good fit with the Bears, who had been relying on Jason Mckie at the tailback position for four of the past six seasons.

Sporting News draft expert Russ Lande and his team of NFL scouts break down the supplemental picks and the two players who weren’t selected:

Harvey Unga, FB-RB, Bears. The Bears acquired a big, strong back with the ability to break tackles and gain yards after contact. He is BYU’s career rushing leader with 3,455 yards and led the Mountain West Conference with 1,087 yards rushing in 2009. With Matt Forte and Chester Taylor on the Bears’ roster, however, Unga’s opportunities to carry the ball will likely be limited to short-yardage situations.

The Bears don’t have an established fullback on their roster, and this move gives them one to develop. Though Unga (6-0 3/4, 244) is not a polished or consistent blocker right now, he has the athleticism, size and strength to develop into a solid blocker. It wouldn’t be a surprise if he becomes the team’s starting fullback in 2010.

Josh Price-Brent, NT, Cowboys. The decision to grab Price-Brent makes a lot of sense for Dallas. He gives the Cowboys a big, athletic prospect who could eventually allow them to move Pro Bowl nose tackle Jay Ratliff to end in their 3-4 scheme. Ratliff’s size makes him a better fit at end, and he would have less wear and tear on the outside.

Price-Brent (6-1 3/4, 321) was a productive college lineman. He played 32 games for Illinois, including 20 starts, and put up 17 1/2 tackles for loss and five sacks. He led the team with three forced fumbles in 2009 and finished third on the team with three sacks.

If Price-Brent can take care of his off-field issues, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him become a starter in 2011. Even if he doesn’t develop quickly enough to start in ’11, he at least will bolster the depth at a critical position.

Quentin Castille, RB, and Vanness Emokpae, WR. Both face an uphill battle to make it in the NFL. Because Unga and Price-Brent were drafted, they will receive signing bonuses and thus have a good shot of making their teams for at least one season. However, Castille and Emokpae will have to try to get signed as free agents and then play catch-up since they weren’t part of a team’s offseason program. As a result, they will likely have a tough time making an active roster. At this point, they would be considered successful if they showed enough in training camp to stick on a team’s practice squad.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Former NFL scout Russ Lande evaluates college players for Sporting News’ Pro Football War Room and GM Jr. Scouting LLC.

In Thursday’s supplemental draft, Chicago and Dallas gave up seventh-round picks in 2011 to add depth to their rosters. The Bears, selecting 12th in Round 7, chose BYU running back/fullback Harvey Unga. The Cowboys, selecting 30th, took Illinois nose tackle Josh Price-Brent. Northwestern (La.) State running back Quentin Castille and Truman State wideout Vanness Emokpae weren’t selected and are available to join any team as a free agent.

Harvey Unga is a good fit with the Bears, who had been relying on Jason Mckie at the tailback position for four of the past six seasons.
Harvey Unga is a good fit with the Bears, who had been relying on Jason Mckie at the tailback position for four of the past six seasons.

Sporting News draft expert Russ Lande and his team of NFL scouts break down the supplemental picks and the two players who weren’t selected:

Harvey Unga, FB-RB, Bears. The Bears acquired a big, strong back with the ability to break tackles and gain yards after contact. He is BYU’s career rushing leader with 3,455 yards and led the Mountain West Conference with 1,087 yards rushing in 2009. With Matt Forte and Chester Taylor on the Bears’ roster, however, Unga’s opportunities to carry the ball will likely be limited to short-yardage situations.

The Bears don’t have an established fullback on their roster, and this move gives them one to develop. Though Unga (6-0 3/4, 244) is not a polished or consistent blocker right now, he has the athleticism, size and strength to develop into a solid blocker. It wouldn’t be a surprise if he becomes the team’s starting fullback in 2010.

Josh Price-Brent, NT, Cowboys. The decision to grab Price-Brent makes a lot of sense for Dallas. He gives the Cowboys a big, athletic prospect who could eventually allow them to move Pro Bowl nose tackle Jay Ratliff to end in their 3-4 scheme. Ratliff’s size makes him a better fit at end, and he would have less wear and tear on the outside.

Price-Brent (6-1 3/4, 321) was a productive college lineman. He played 32 games for Illinois, including 20 starts, and put up 17 1/2 tackles for loss and five sacks. He led the team with three forced fumbles in 2009 and finished third on the team with three sacks.

If Price-Brent can take care of his off-field issues, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him become a starter in 2011. Even if he doesn’t develop quickly enough to start in ’11, he at least will bolster the depth at a critical position.

Quentin Castille, RB, and Vanness Emokpae, WR. Both face an uphill battle to make it in the NFL. Because Unga and Price-Brent were drafted, they will receive signing bonuses and thus have a good shot of making their teams for at least one season. However, Castille and Emokpae will have to try to get signed as free agents and then play catch-up since they weren’t part of a team’s offseason program. As a result, they will likely have a tough time making an active roster. At this point, they would be considered successful if they showed enough in training camp to stick on a team’s practice squad.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Former NFL scout Russ Lande evaluates college players for Sporting News’ Pro Football War Room and GM Jr. Scouting LLC.

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