New Orleans Saints Executive Vice President/General Manager Mickey Loomis announced today that the club has signed S Vinnie Sunseri, OLB Ronald Powell and T Tavon Rooksto four-year contracts. Sunseri and Powell were fifth round draft picks, while Rooks was the club's sixth round choice.
Sunseri, 22, was selected by the Saints in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft with the 167th overall pick out of Alabama. The 6-foot, 200-pound defender and special teams standout appeared in 34 games, starting 14 games his final two seasons. He posted career totals of 105 tackles (67 solo), four interceptions, two returned for touchdowns, 12 passes defensed, one forced fumble and three fumble recoveries. As a junior in 2013, Sunseri played in seven games with six starts before suffering a season-ending knee injury and posted 20 tackles (14 solo), two interceptions returned for touchdown and six passes defensed.
Powell, 23, was selected by the Saints in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft with the 169nd overall pick out of the University of Florida. The 6-foot-3 inch, 237-pound native of Moreno Valley, Calif., appeared in 36 games with 21 starts. He posted career totals of 84 tackles (55 solo), 11 sacks, two passes defensed and one forced fumble. In 2013, Powell started eight of the 11 games he appeared in and posted 26 tackles (19 solo) and a team-high four sacks. Powell also led the Gators with six quarterback takedowns as a sophomore in 2011.
Rooks, 24, was selected by the Saints in the sixth round of the draft with the 202nd pick overall. The 6-foot-5 inch, 300-pound tackle from Kansas State appeared in 26 games with 23 starts, serving as the Wildcats' starting right tackle in 2012 and 2013. This 2012 All-Big 12 honorable mention selection rebounded transferred from Navarro Junior College in 2012 and anchored the right side of Kansas State's offensive line for two seasons. The Baltimore, Maryland native graduated with a bachelor's degree in social sciences.