On Tuesday, the Washington Redskins beefed up their defensive line as they signed Phillip Merling to a reserve/futures contract. Merling is a 6-5, 315 pound defensive end who was drafted in the second round (32nd overall) of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins.
Merling was a standout during his three years at Clemson University. During his junior year, he was a key member of a defense that finished the season in the top-10 in scoring and total defense. To add to his honors, he was a member of the 2007 All-Atlantic Coast Conference Team after finishing the season with 78 tackles and seven sacks.
During his rookie season, Merling showed off his abilities in a game against the New York Jets when he picked off Brett Favre and rumbled into the end zone for a pick-six. His interception was a game-changing moment and helped the Dolphins clinch the AFC East title.
Watch video of the interception here:
During his five-year career, Merling has 72 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and two fumble recoveries. Merling’s most recent action in the NFL came this past season with the Green Bay Packers, where he appeared in three games.
Merling joins fellow Clemson Tiger Jarvis Jenkins on the defensive line. Jenkins was drafted by the Redskins in the second round (41st overall) in the 2011 NFL Draft and appeared in every game this season.
Also signed Tuesday to reserve/futures contracts were Chigbo Anunoby, Dominique Hamilton, Eric Kettani, Korey Lindsey and Deangelo Peterson. Those five players were on the Redskins’ practice squad at the end of the 2012 season.
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