In addition to Long Beach Poly and USC alum Iman Marshall, five other Long Beach football products have joined NFL teams with training camp approaching.
Marshall was selected by the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth round of the Draft, but wasn’t the only Long Beach native to be selected.
Quinton Bell played at Poly for three years before transferring to Costa Mesa, and he lists his hometown as Long Beach. Bell played college ball at Prairie View A&M and was the first player from that college drafted since 1980; he was selected in the seventh round by the Oakland Raiders.
Bell is an intriguing prospect–he was a competitive BMX biker in high school and played receiver for three years in college before converting to defense. The result is a defensive end who’s 6’4”, 253 pounds, and runs a 4.3 40, making him an intriguing figure for the Raiders.
Marshall and Bell have both signed rookie deals with their respective teams.
A pair of former Lancers have signed undrafted free agent deals and will spend the summer trying to make their respective teams. Ryan Pope, a Lakewood Lancer and a standout at LBCC who matriculated to San Diego State, was signed by the Lions. Detroit gave Pope one of the largest deals of any UDFA player, signaling that they think he has as good a chance of making the team as one of their lower draft picks; typically UDFA’s are extreme long shots to make an NFL roster.
Toa Lobendahn began his career at Lakewood before transferring to La Habra; Lobendahn signed with the New York Jets.
A pair of players who transferred into Cabrillo for their senior years both signed undrafted. Elijah Walker was a one-year standout for the Jaguars who then went to Cerritos College, where he was a stud for two years, earning a scholarship to Kansas State. The Long Beach native signed with with the Seahawks last week. Darren Gardenhire played two years at Lakewood before transferring to Cabrillo his senior year to play with coach Jason Brown. Gardenhire graduated and played for Washington, Montana State, and Delta State in college; he also signed with the Seahawks.