Former McNeese DB getting NFL shot

Published 8:06 pm Saturday, April 27, 2024

Former McNeese State defensive back Andrea Sam, who played his final season at LSU last fall, didn’t hear his name called during the seven-round NFL draft this week.

That, however, hasn’t ended his dream of playing in the league.

Sam was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles on Saturday night after the draft concluded. According to the NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, Sam’s deal is worth $150,000 guaranteed with a $20,000 signing bonus.

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He was one of five LSU players to sign free-agent deals after six Tigers were taken, three in the first round.

Sam’s long trip to an NFL camp began way back in 2017 when after his final season at Iowa High School was a walk-on for then-head coach Lance Guidry at McNeese.

Sam (26) was a Cowboy for five seasons, staying with the program that was put on academic probation, through a COVID season and the devastation of Hurricanes Laura and Delta.

When asked by the American Press why he stayed when so many other players left, Sam said “This is my home.”

He grew into the role of a leader with the Cowboys, overcoming a speech disorder to become a vocal leader of the club through troubled times. Sam also became a role model for others with his same issue, showing them what they can still accomplish.

“We have been through a lot here,” Sam said in 2020. “It has not been easy, but we have worked hard to get through it.”

Sam earned all-Southland Conference honors twice while with the Cowboys. He finished with 179 tackles, five interceptions and 20 pass breakups.

He transferred to Marshall when Guidry was hired as the defensive coordinator of the Thundering Herd and helped in an upset victory of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana.

In 12 games with Marshall last season Sam had one interception, 53 tackles, and eight pass breakups.

With still a year left of eligibility Sam transferred to his dream school, LSU. 

As a Tiger, Sam played in all 13 games, recording 85 tackles with 43 being solo. He had 11 tackles for loss and three interceptions.

During his season at LSU Sam said he just wanted a chance to play at the next level.

“I want to get a shot, that’s all I can ask for,” he said. 

While it may not be the dream of being drafted, Sam will get his shot to show an NFL team just what he can do.