NC State tight end Asa Watson headed to Patriots

News ServicesMay 11, 2014 

N.C. State, NC State, football, ACC, La Tech, Louisana Tech, Doe

N.C. State's tight end Asa Watson (82) tries to break free from Louisiana Tech's safety Thomas McDonald (33).

ETHAN HYMAN — ehyman@newsobserver.com Buy Photo

— The New England Patriots reportedly signed tight end Asa Watson, from N.C. State and Rock Hill High, as an undrafted free agent Saturday. The signing was reported by The New England Sports Network, which cited a Baltimore Sun source.

Watson has Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome, which causes the ventricles of the heart to prematurely contract. He had two surgeries a few years ago to treat the condition, takes medication to keep it under control, and said before the draft he told the few NFL teams that asked about it that “it’s a nuisance rather than a hindrance.”

Watson, the younger brother of New Orleans Saints tight end Ben Watson, said his first symptoms appeared after his freshman season in 2009 when he felt lightheaded and his heartbeat sped up during a workout.

Once doctors figured out what was wrong, he had surgeries in 2010 and 2011.

Watson redshirted in 2011 to recover and came back with his best year at N.C. State in 2012. He caught 24 passes for 282 yards with his only career touchdown in coach Tom O’Brien’s pro-style system.

Watson is 6-foot-3 and 239 pounds.

The Associated Press contributed.

Bears sign Lynch

The Chicago Bears announced deals with nine undrafted free agents, highlighted by former Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch.

Lynch threw for 2,892 yards and 24 touchdowns during his senior season. He also rushed for 1,920 yards and 23 TDs.

Lynch, 23, who finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting, is listed as a running back on the Bears’ release.

Free agents signings from

North Carolina colleges

Baltimore: North Carolina offensive tackle James Hurst.

Chicago: East Carolina defensive tackle Lee Pegues.

Denver: North Carolina quarterback Bryn Renner.

Miami: East Carolina linebacker Derrell Johnson.

New England: N.C. State tight end Asa Watson (Rock Hill High) and East Carolina tight end Justin Jones.

New York Jets: Saint Augustine’s receiver Jermaine Jones and Wake Forest defensive end Zach Thompson.

Oakland: Winston-Salem State linebacker Carlos Fields (Northern Vance High).

Pittsburgh: East Carolina offensive guard Will Simmons.

San Francisco: Catawba safety/return specialist L.J. McCray.

Invited to Panthers rookie minicamp

Texas cornerback Carrington Byndom; Ohio State receiver Corey Brown; Montreal offensive lineman David Foucault; Miami offensive lineman Jared Wheeler; Missouri receiver Marcus Lucas; Michigan State linebacker Denicos Allen; West Virginia defensive lineman Shaq Rowell; Ohio State offensive lineman Andrew Norwell.

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