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  • Ben Hall

Maryland linebacker Tre Watson signs with the Miami Dolphins

Former Maryland LB Tre Watson was signed by the Miami Dolphins as an undrafted free agent following the 2019 NFL Draft.

“It’s a great feeling to be in a position to live out the dreams that I’ve had my entire life,” Watson said. “And it’s really just about showing people that you can find a way to reach your goals regardless of what others say, regardless of how hard it has to be. I never got an easy road and it always felt like i couldn’t catch a break, but I’m still in a position to fulfill everything that I could ever imagine doing.”

After a stellar senior season at Maryland, it was very surprising Watson went undrafted.

But soon after the draft, Watson signed by the Miami Dolphins.

“There won’t be anything else to say once it comes time to play the game,” Watson said when asked what his message to the teams who did not draft him. “They will learn what they passed up on and that is that. I don’t take it too harshly anymore; I have the opportunity that I needed and am exactly where I need to be.”

Watson started his collegiate career at Illinois. He played for them for the Illini for three seasons before transferring to Maryland.

In his three seasons at Illinois, he had 188 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and 10 TFLs. And in all three seasons he was named Academic All-Big Ten.

After his junior season, Watson graduated with a community health degree and transferred to Maryland.

“Maryland and Illinois had many similarities honestly in that both couldn’t reach a breakthrough and were going through instability at times,” Watson said. “It was just the right environment for me specifically with my skill set and the people that were put in place around me for me to be successful. I had a coach who put ultimate faith in me which I never had before and we worked together which maximized my ability to produce on the field.”

At Maryland, Watson had 104 tackles, 5 interceptions, and 1 touchdown. Watson was named to the FWAA Second Team All-American and First Team All-Big Ten. Watson was also the Big Ten tackles leader.

“Maryland put me in this position to be successful by being exactly what I needed at the right time,” he said. “The right people were around me, I was in the right environment, and my team put trust me in to help us be successful which allowed everything to happen.”

After his senior season, Watson trained for the draft in Tampa, Florida.

“I went through the pre draft process in Tampa, Florida training at the Applied Science Performance Institute (ASPI) where they helped me craft myself into the best and most NFL ready version of myself possible,” Watson said. “I also had the opportunity to play in the East West Shrine Game in my hometown which was an extremely rewarding experience.”

The East West Shrine Game helped put Watson in front of pro scouts while playing against some of the best college players in the county.

After just a few practices with the Miami Dolphins, Watson has already learned a large amount.

“It’s been an accelerated learning process honestly and has revealed that I have the tools needed to be successful at this level,” he said. “It will just be about working on my craft on a daily basis to be prepared to contribute for our team in any phase that I possibly can.”


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