Brown, Sensabaugh, Hedgecock Drafted

With just five picks left, fullback Madison Hedgecock was taken by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh round, joining center Jason Brown (Baltimore Ravens) and safety Gerald Sensabaugh (Jacksonville Jaguars) to complete North Carolina's 2005 NFL Draft class.

Hedgecock, 6-foot-3, 260 pounds, a strong, hard-hitter, was the 251st pick of 255.

"I thought I would be drafted earlier, but there were a lot of fullbacks ahead of me," Hedgecock told Inside Carolina from his home in Wallburg, N.C. "I was thinking maybe New England was going to give me one last shot or then I was going to become a free agent. But then I was surprised by St. Louis.

"It's exciting moving to a new city and I can't wait to get started going to work."

Hedgecock endured a switch to the defensive side of the ball during his collegiate career, but came on strong as a senior back at fullback for the most part and coming up with a couple of big performances at tailback.

At UNC Pro Timing Day on March 22, Hedgecock said he expected to play H-Back at the pro level.

The Rams finished 8-8, but secured a wild card spot before falling to Atlanta in the 2004 NFC Divisional playoffs.


Sensabaugh
Sensabaugh, 6-2, 217, was a fifth round selection (157th overall) by Jacksonville. He transferred to UNC from East Tennessee State after its program was shut down. In just one season in Chapel Hill, he led the Tar Heels in tackles and tackles for loss, and was second on the team in sacks and pass breakups on his way to All-ACC honorable mention.

"My dream came true," Sensabaugh said moments after hearing the news. "I thought I would have gone a little earlier, but it's great I'm going to Jacksonville. I got a good vibe from the position coach who was working me out. I wanted to play for a team in the south in the warm weather. It seems like a good fit for me."

"I'm very happy to have this over with now. I'm just ready to go out there, compete and make the team."


Brown
Brown, named first team All-America by Pro Football Weekly, was taken in the fourth round by the Baltimore with the 124th pick. Surprisingly, he was the sixth center taken overall.

"I think Baltimore is a great fit for me and my family," Brown told UNC's official website. "I know the offensive line coach there and he will help me tremendously. I think I can have a long and successful career in Baltimore. I also have several family members in the Washington, D.C. and Maryland area so I will have a lot of support."

A native of Henderson, N.C., Brown, 6-4, 313, started 36 consecutive games at center and did not allow a sack over his final two seasons at UNC. He graded out over 90 percent in five games last year, including William & Mary, Louisville, Florida State, Miami and Wake Forest. Brown was one of seven finalists for the Dave Rimington Award as the nation's top center and was named ACC offensive lineman of the week three times as a senior. No other player earned the honor more than twice last year.

Both Baltimore and Jacksonville failed to make the playoffs in 2004, each finishing 9-7.

Meanwhile, Darian Durant, Jacque Lewis, Willie McNeil, Chad Scott, Jonas Seawright, Greg Warren and others will have to wait and see if they will be picked up as free agents in the coming weeks.

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