McNally signs with Redskins
Published: Friday, May 4, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 15:02
Former UNH defensive end Brian McNally sat in anticipation as he watched one round after another of the NFL draft pass before him. It was not until the end of the draft on Saturday, April 28, when he received the call that he had been waiting for. The call came from the Washington Redskins, and by the time the draft had ended, Brian McNally had agreed to sign as a free agent with the team.
The days leading up to the draft were filled with anxiety and eagerness for McNally and his family. He described how he didn’t know what to expect and when he finally did get the phone call, exhilaration consumed him.
“[I have] dreamed about this moment [my] entire life,” McNally said on Thursday. “I was shocked and so excited to be a part of an NFL team.”
The Cornwall, N.Y., native will now have to undergo the physically demanding minicamps with the Redskins organization, which began today, Friday, May 4. He is expected to participate in the camps as a linebacker. For McNally, it is one step at a time. He has focused on preparing himself physically and mentally so he can face whatever will be asked of him.
“I have been training back home, getting ready for camp,” McNally said. “Doing a lot of the basics like running and lifting, as well as a lot of position drills.”
McNally knows that this opportunity in the NFL will demand his highest physical capability, and he is ready to put that on display at camp.
After redshirting his freshman year, McNally played in all 13 games as a starter for the Wildcats during his sophomore season and was named the CAA Defensive Rookie of the Year.
During the 2010 season, McNally set a UNH single-season record with 13.5 sacks. He was also named to the FCS All-New England team that season, and again in 2011.
McNally noted that he feels the UNH program has prepared him well for his future in pro football.
“I have had a great experience with the program,” McNally said. “Coach [Sean McDonell] was very demanding and would push us to the limit. We ran a good and complex defense that has prepared me mentally.”
A couple of teams had spoken with McNally’s agent, but it was the Redskins that McNally felt the most comfortable with.
“It’s a great organization,” McNally said. “Being from the Northeast, I am happy to go somewhere closer to home.”
McNally also discussed how he is intrigued by the history of the organization. The Redskins have won three Super Bowl Championships, the most recent being in 1991 against the Buffalo Bills.
“I am excited to be a part of a historical NFL team,” McNally said.