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Atlanta drafts EWU’s Rodgers

Staff And Wire Reports

Jake Rodgers will get his chance to play on Sundays.

The Eastern Washington offensive lineman was picked by the Atlanta Falcons in the seventh round of the NFL draft on Saturday.

Rodgers, from Shadle Park High School, played at Washington State before transferring in 2013 to EWU, where he was a fixture at right tackle the past two seasons.

The 6-foot-6, 320-pound Rodgers was instrumental in helping an Eagles offense that ranked near the top of the Football Championship Subdivision last year. He also played guard at the college level.

Rodgers, who played tight end in high school, was praised by NFL experts for his natural ability in blocking on the edge, his good hands and ability to work combo blocks.

Rodgers, the 225th overall draft selection, is the first EWU player drafted since 2012, when safety Matt Johnson was picked in the fourth round by the Dallas Cowboys.

Browns pick Mayle

Vince Mayle will be playing for a new team in a new state next year, but at least there will be one familiar face. On Saturday, the Cleveland Browns made Mayle the 123rd pick in the NFL draft just hours after selecting his Washington State teammate, defensive tackle Xavier Cooper, with the 96th pick on Friday.

Mayle set WSU records last season with 106 receptions for 1,483 yards, and caught nine touchdown passes. He should have a chance to contribute immediately to a Cleveland receiving corps that did not have a receiver catch more than three touchdown passes last season.

WSU quarterback Connor Halliday was not among the 256 players selected during the three-day draft, but signed with Washington as an undrafted free agent.

Seahawks sign Army vet

U.S. Army veteran and former Texas long snapper Nate Boyer will get his chance to make an NFL roster in Seattle.

The Seahawks reached an agreement with Boyer as an undrafted free agent, giving the 34-year-old former member of the U.S. Army Special Forces a chance to continue his football career that started as a walk-on with the Longhorns.

“You fall in love through the process with guys and give people opportunities for different reasons all through the draft,” Seattle general manager John Schneider said. “Through a good friend of mine I’ve become aware of who this guy is at his core and what he represents and what he’s done every single year at Texas and three tours and coming out of high school, he’s just a phenomenal person. And he’s a competitor, and he’s tough and he represents a lot of really, really cool things that quite frankly that I think will be good for all of us to be around.”

Boyer did tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. He was part of the Green Berets and earned a Bronze Star.

Vandal invites

The Seahawks signed undrafted free-agent offensive lineman Jesse Davis from Idaho.

Former Vandals tight end Justin Podrabsky has been invited to the Dallas Cowboys minicamp.

Defensive lineman Quayshawne Buckley landed with Tampa Bay.

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