Rancocas Valley Graduate Shaun Bradley Happy to Stay Home After the NFL Draft

Rancocas Valley Graduate Shaun Bradley Happy to Stay Home After the NFL Draft
Shaun Bradley was not recruited very highly when he attended Rancocas Valley. He was a standout running back who enjoyed a stellar career but sometimes players slip through the cracks. As a senior at Rancocas Vallley, he rushed for 1,467 yards and 22 touchdowns on 188 carries.
Temple was the one school that showed interest and he was grayshirted there, meaning he was recruited but couldn’t count until the next recruiting class because the Owls were out of available scholarships. So he took classes at Burlington County College in the fall and then enrolled at Temple.
After being a reserve as a freshman, he became a three-year starter at linebacker, a two-time first-team all-American Athletic Conference selection.
He was invited to the NFL combine and then his dream not only came true of being selected in the NFL draft, but he went to a team in his own backyard, the Eagles, who selected him in the sixth round.
Bradley played his college football at Lincoln Financial Field and now will stay right there as he looks to add to the Eagles linebacking depth.
He has the ability to play special teams, which will enhance his chances to make the squad. The 6-foot-1, 235-pound Bradley ran an impressive 4.51 40-yard dash at the NFL combine.
Bradley played 50 games for Temple, making 38 starts. He led the Owls this season with 87 tackles. For his career he made 256 tackles, including 22 tackles for loss, eight pass break-ups, three interceptions, three forced fumbles, two sacks and one fumble recovery.
He played middle linebacker at Temple and never blitzed very much, thus the low sack total. He likely projects more to an outside linebacker spot in the NFL.
Bradley follows a long list of Rancocas Valley greats into the NFL. Three of the players were first round draft choices, running back Franco Harris (an NFL Hall of Fame selection), receiver Irving Fryar and defensive lineman Alonzo Spellman.
As for getting drafted by his home team?
“It was a totally unbelievable moment,” he said in a video conference with reporters. “I was in complete shock.”
Bradley was drafted in the round he was projected to go. He was expected to be either a sixth or seventh round draft choice.
Going to Temple gave him on-the-job training in adapting to different situations.
He was recruited by Matt Rhule and played one season for him. Rhule then departed for Baylor and is now the head coach of the Carolina Panthers.
Bradley played two seasons for Geoff Collins, who then left to become the head coach at Georgia Tech. Manny Diaz replaced Collins, but stayed just 18 days before being hired as the head coach at Miami, where he had been the defensive coordinator.
Rod Carey took over and Bradley played for him as a senior. While some would view playing for so many coaches to be an unstable situation, Bradley said he benefited from working for three different coaching staffs. 
“It helped a lot,” he said. “…I was able to take things in and pick random coaches’ brains and add to what I already somewhat knew. So I felt like it benefited me for sure.”
While making an NFL roster is no sure thing, especially for a sixth round pick, Bradley’s intelligence, athletic ability and physical and mental toughness are all traits that should help him in his quest to make the Eagles.
He is a classic example of a player who wasn’t highly recruited out of high school but made the most of a chance he was given, one that earned him a college degree and the chance to fulfill a life-long dream of playing in the NFL.

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Author: Marc Narducci; Photo courtesy of Temple University Athletics

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