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With record in reach, 'he would trade it all in for wins'

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With record in reach, 'he would trade it all in for wins'

COLLEGE PARK -- Junior pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue, within a season of turmoil and change for Maryland, has been a bright spot. His 10 sacks put him among the top players in the nation and just three sacks away from tying the school’s single-season mark with four games to go.

Maryland defensive coordinator Keith Dudzinski, speaking to the media at a press conference Wednesday, scraped away some of the typical niceties that come with the presumed humbleness of a player approaching a record and was more frank when asked whether he believes that record has a place in Ngakoue’s mind.

“He says it doesn’t, but I’m sure he thinks about it,” he said. “I think in all competition, you’ve got a chance to beat a record you’re going to do everything you can to do that.”

Then he added one qualifier.

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“In Yannick’s favor, I think he would trade it all in for wins.”

And wins have been in short supply, with Maryland standing at 2-6 with Wisconsin set to visit College Park on Saturday for the program’s homecoming game.

Flickers of light in a difficult season like Ngakoue approaching the sack record are a point of pride, but even in light of that the junior said just what Dudzinski predicted he would.

“It’s not in my head,” he said. “I’m the type of person like when I go in the game, I just keep working hard, keep working hard to get to the quarterback and I wasn’t aware that I had this many sacks.

“When you put in the work, man, and you look up, the results show for themselves.”

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Maryland's Darnell Savage signs rookie contract with Green Bay Packers

Maryland's Darnell Savage signs rookie contract with Green Bay Packers

Darnell Savage is the third NFL draft prospect profiled in our series ‘I Am the Prospect’. Download the MyTeams App for all three features.

Darnell Savage Jr. spent four seasons wowing fans in College Park as a defensive star for the Maryland Terrapins, and in April he found out he’ll be taking his talents to Wisconsin after being selected in the first round of the NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers.

Now, his future in Green Bay is officially official.

As Schefter mentions, Savage is the first first-rounder to sign a contract in 2019. It will be the standard length of first-round draft picks, going four years guaranteed with a fifth-year option. Reports are that the speedy, hard-hitting safety will earn $12.5 million over the first four seasons of the contract.

There were some questions about Savage’s fit in an NFL defensive backfield, given his size. But he is an athletic player with great instincts for the ball, and his statistics were thoroughly impressive the last two seasons in college. The Packers certainly believed he would be a terrific fit in their defense, considering they traded up to the 21st pick in order to make the selection.

Savage should have a great opportunity to start early in Green Bay, and now that he’s signed his contract so early, he’ll be able to get to work sooner rather than later. Knowing Savage, that’s just the way he wants it.

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NFL Draft prospect Tre Watson hopes to time draft night around 'Avengers' release

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NFL Draft prospect Tre Watson hopes to time draft night around 'Avengers' release

Thursday night will be a very important moment in the life of former Maryland linebacker Tre Watson.

At midnight, the highly-anticipated Marvel movie Avengers: Endgame will hit the big screen for general audiences to see, bringing the conclusion to a decade worth of popular films. Watson, like millions of others, has been counting down the days until he could see the Avengers and Thanos go at it one more time.

Oh, and Thursday also marks the beginning of the 2019 NFL Draft, where Watson will most likely hear his name called at some point over the three-day span.

While Watson will be tuning into the draft that night, he understands that his moment of recognition may come a little later on in the week. Therefore, Thursday is all about 'Avengers'.

"Fortunately, you know, I'm kind of realistic. I know I'm not going to be a first-round pick," Watson said in an interview on NFL Network. "So I'll just be watching that just kind of for the formality of it, I'm definitely excited for 'Avengers' and then I kind of will springboard into Day 2 and Day 3 where I'm hoping to hear my name called. It's really a perfect set up for me, honestly."

This isn't the first time that Watson has let it be known to the world that he is a dedicated Marvel fan. His Twitter feed is filled with thoughts on the movie, including a tweet from a few months back that took the internet by storm.

The first round of the draft still does have some intrigue for Watson, as his former teammate Darnell Savage Jr. has gained a lot of steam during the draft process and has a chance to be chosen on Thursday night. However, Watson will hope that Savage's name is called earlier in the night rather than later, as he will need time to get to the theatre to prepare to watch  Captain America and company save the day one last time. 

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