4. Andrew Sendejo, Safety for Minnesota Vikings
Rice University isn’t exactly known for being a college football powerhouse. So its no surprise, that despite ranking second in school history with 318 career tackles, Sendejo went undrafted in the 2010 NFL Draft. After failing to make the Tampa Bay Buccaneers off of a tryout, he started his career with Sacramento Mountain Lions of the United Football League. From there he slowly worked his way up the NFL ladder by working on the practice squads of the Dallas Cowboys and the New York Jets.
In 2011, the Minnesota Vikings took a chance on the 28-year-old from San Antonio, Texas. The move paid off, from 2011 to 2014, Sendejo became one of the premiere special teams players in the NFL. After totaling 50 special teams tackles in that span, and after collecting 52 solo tackles with some brief starts in 2013, the Vikings finally promoted Sendejo to the starting lineup in 2015.
Last season Senedjo had the best season of his career with 74 total tackles, a ½ sack, three pass break ups and an interception. Those numbers forced the Vikings to reward Sendejo with a four-year, $16 million contract extension back in March. Opposing offenses in the NFL have now been put on notice.