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McIntyre makes late bid for NFL roster spot

By Steve Yingling

Tribune sports editor

Garrett McIntyre isn’t giving up on his dream of playing in the NFL without a fight.

The defensive end out of South Lake Tahoe signed a free-agent contract with the Tennessee Titans last week after being released by the Arizona Cardinals.

“I’m going to keep trying. Hopefully things will work out here in Tennessee,” McIntyre said. “It’s kind of hard coming in this late and getting a fair shake, because there are guys who have been here two or three months.”

McIntyre squeezed in five practices as the Titans finished two-a-days last week and then played eight to 10 plays in Tennessee’s 20-6 loss to Atlanta on Saturday night.

“It went pretty good. I did my job and got a couple of assists,” McIntyre said.

Arizona released McIntyre and five other players two days after a 30-3 defeat to New England on Aug. 19. McIntyre was limited to several plays.

“They said it was a numbers game … that they had too many guys,” McIntyre said.

The 6-foot-3, 260-pound undrafted rookie out of Fresno State University was cut by defending NFC champion Seattle on June 2. Seattle signed the former South Tahoe High linebacker to a free-agent contract only hours after the NFL draft’s completion in April. A strained hamstring prevented McIntyre from making much of an impression during a postdraft minicamp before the Seahawks released him.

McIntyre may have landed in a better situation in Tennessee. The Titans only have six active defensive ends, including four rookies, on their roster. The veteran of the group is Kyle Vanden Bosch, a fifth-year player out of Nebraska.

“A lot of guys are injured right now, so I’m getting a good opportunity,” McIntyre said. “But it’s hard to tell where it’s at. They obviously have their favorites and they have free-agent players who have been here the whole time. It’s a tough business to get in this late and really make a team.”

The Titans are scheduled to trim their roster today.

If it doesn’t work out with the Titans, McIntyre said his NFL preseason appearances will help him prepare for a future position in the NFL.

“The best thing for me is I have some NFL film now if I want to go to NFL Europe,” McIntyre said. “But it’s too early to tell.”

McIntyre walked on Pat Hill’s Fresno State squad in 2002 and worked his way into the starting lineup that same season. He went on to become the Western Athletic Conference’s Defensive Player of the Year as a senior.


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