Super Bowl runner-up signs McIntyre
By Steve Yingling
Tribune sports editor
The disappointment of being undrafted didn’t last long for South Tahoe High graduate Garrett McIntyre.
McIntyre was signed as a free agent by last year’s Super Bowl runner-up Seattle on Sunday night.
“It’s a great team, a great organization,” McIntyre said. “They didn’t really lose anybody. I expect that their team will go far and I’m hoping to go with them.”
McIntyre will likely earn the league minimum if he makes the Seahawks. Like any other rookie, McIntyre’s contract is contingent upon him making the squad.
The former Sierra Division defensive MVP was trying to become the first area player drafted since Mike Crawford in 1997.
“Of course I was disappointed,” McIntyre said. “It was a goal to have my name called out. But I was prepared for it, and I’m glad I did prepare so thoroughly for free agency.”
The Seahawks became the frontrunner for McIntyre’s services late in Sunday’s draft.
“They were the team that was on me tough and we didn’t want to wait and miss an opportunity,” said McIntyre, who signed with the Seahawks about 15 minutes after the draft concluded.
McIntyre’s agent Jill Baxter said free agency becomes an instinctual process.
“It all checked out where this was going to be the place to go,” Baxter said. “A lot of different teams were interested, but basically it comes down to the team you feel good with and work with them to get the deal done.”
McIntyre didn’t work out with the Seahawks prior to last weekend’s NFL draft. The Patriots and Bengals were believed to be the teams most interested in the two-time Western Athletic Conference first-team defensive lineman since they saw him work out.
“I know some of the coaches on staff and they have shown quite a bit of interest in him,” Baxter said.
McIntyre recorded 25 quarterback sacks during his four seasons at Fresno State. He was voted the WAC’s preseason and postseason defensive player of the year this past season.
The 6-foot-3, 262-pound McIntyre will switch from defensive tackle to defensive end or outside linebacker as a pro. He also figures to be a special teams commodity since he repeatedly played on those units after walking on at Fresno State in 2002.
The Seahawks only drafted one other defensive end – Darryl Tapp of Virginia Tech. Other defensive ends on the roster include eight-year veteran Grant Wistrom; Bryce Fisher, a five-year pro from Air Force; Jeb Huckeba, one year, Arkansas; Alain Kashama, second year Michigan; Robert Pollard, second year, Texas Christian; Kemp Rasmussen, fifth year, Indiana; and Joe Tafoya, fifth year, Arizona.
“They drafted one high in the second round and I’m sure some more defensive ends will be there when we get there,” McIntyre said. “I just have to get there and beat them out.”
McIntyre will leave on Thursday to participate in a three-day minicamp that wraps up Sunday in Seattle.
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