Three tryout players have taken advantage of the Chiefs’ annual rookie minicamp in a big way.
The club announced Tuesday that Fresno State cornerback Shannon Edwards, guard Garrick Mayweather and Nebraska tackle/guard Zach Sterup have been signed following the Chiefs’ three-day rookie minicamp, which lasted Saturday until Monday.
The Chiefs also signed 26-year-old center Drew Nowak, a fourth-year pro who started seven games with the Seattle Seahawks in 2015.
To make room for those four on the 90-man offseason roster, the Chiefs also released offensive tackle Laurence Gibson, safety Jordan Kovacs, guard Jake Bernstein and center Ben Clarke.
The addition of Edwards, a 5-foot-10, 194-pounder from Fresno State, makes sense. During the rookie camp, he nabbed two interceptions in Monday’s final practice. Mayweather, a 6-foot-3, 319-pounder from Fordham, and Sterup, a 6-foot-9, 318-pounder from Nebraska, also impressed during a camp that coach Andy Reid said was among the most productive he’s had during his four years in Kansas City.
“This is probably the best group we’ve had, just in the way they went about their business and learning and so forth,” Reid said. “We were able to actually have a good camp and get some things done there.”
Nowak — who was released by the Seahawks on May 4 — lost his starting spot on the Seahawks a year ago, but adds some experience behind starter Mitch Morse, one of the club’s top rookies in 2014. Morse’s primary backup, Zach Fulton, thrived as a center in 2015 but is a guard by trade and could find himself in position to compete for a starting position now that the club’s most consistent guard, Jeff Allen, left for the Houston Texans in free-agency.
Gibson, 25, is the most notable player of the four who were released. The 6-foot-6, 315-pounder was a seventh-round pick of the Dallas Cowboys in 2015, but was cut by the Cowboys when teams had to reduce their rosters from 75 to 53 men in September. He was quickly snapped up by the Chiefs and spent the entire season on the practice squad, but lost some first-team reps to Sterup throughout rookie camp.
Kovacs, 25, signed with the Dolphins as a rookie free agent in 2013, and has played in 27 games since then, recording 11 tackles and a sack. He was signed by the Chiefs to a reserve-futures deal in January.
Bernstein, who played at Vanderbilt, and Clarke, who played at Hawaii, were both signed a week ago as undrafted free agents.
Edwards, Mayweather, Nowak and Sterup will now try to hold on to their roster spots through 13 practices in organized-team activities over the next month and until the Chiefs open training camp in St. Joseph in late July.
It is a tough task, but not necessarily an impossible one. A year ago, center Daniel Munyer went from being a rookie camp invite to training camp participant. Munyer, who remains on the 90-man roster, was even on the team’s 53-man roster for a game last season.
Munyer was among the four rookie tryout players a year ago — along with guard Melvin Meggs, running back Keshawn Hill and tackle Kelvin Palmer — to sign with the club following last year’s rookie camp.