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Colts give WR Da'Rick Rogers another chance

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP)

The Indianapolis Colts are giving Da'Rick Rogers one more chance to make it in the NFL.

Hours after the team announced it signed the talented but troubled rookie receiver to the practice squad, Rogers insisted he's a changed person.

The 6-foot-3, 205-pound receiver was considered a prized recruit coming out of high school when he verbally committed to Georgia, but he wound up signing with Tennessee.

Before even playing in a college game, he was allegedly involved in a bar brawl.

After his sophomore season with the Volunteers, Rogers was suspended indefinitely for violating team rules and, after transferring to Tennessee Tech, acknowledged he had failed multiple drug tests while he was in Knoxville.

He promised it won't happen again.

''The drugs have been over, that was the last strike on that,'' he told reporters after Monday's practice.

But the ramifications have continued.

Rogers was bypassed in April's draft, opting to sign instead with Buffalo as an undrafted free agent.

But on a team looking for playmakers, Rogers did not make much of an impression in training camp or the preseason and was cut by the Bills on Aug. 26.

Less than a week after what he thought would be his last shot to make the NFL, the Colts are giving Rogers another chance.

''I learned a lot from that (Buffalo), and I learned more off the field than on it,'' he said. ''I'm still a work in progress, I'm learning every day.''

Rogers does not come with the kind of resume Indianapolis is accustomed to, but he's not the first Colts player with a troubled past to try and fit in, either.

Five-time Pro Bowler Robert Mathis said the Colts would welcome him into the locker room, if Rogers can live up to the team's standards. Mathis, for one, believes Rogers can do that.

''We've got to let him know how to do things around here and we all expect him to follow,'' Mathis said. ''When they mess up, that puts them in redemption mode.''

The signing of Rogers highlighted a busy day for the Colts off the field.

Indy acquired 6-foot-3, 268-pound linebacker Cam Johnson in a trade with San Francisco for a conditional draft pick. Johnson is expected to play outside linebacker and could give the Colts another pass rusher.

To make room for Johnson, the Colts waived tight end Justice Cunningham, the last pick in April's draft. Cunningham was the second straight ''Mr. Irrelevant'' to make Indy's 53-man roster out of the preseason.

He was trying to become the second straight ''Mr. Irrelevant'' to make the Colts' opening day roster. Last year, quarterback Chandler Harnish made the team out of training camp.

Indy also signed running back Kerwynn Williams to the practice squad, one day after it had waived the seventh-round draft pick.

And rookie safety John Boyett, Indy's sixth-round pick, was arrested early Monday on charges of public intoxication, disorderly conduct and resisting law enforcement.

According to a police report, Boyett ran away when police tried to arrest him and after he was caught, Boyett allegedly began shouting repeatedly that officers could not arrest him because he was ''a Colts player.''

Boyett is on the Colts non-football injury list as he tries to recover from injuries to both knees, which kept him out of all but one game last season at Oregon.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Tagged: Colts, 49ers, Robert Mathis, Cam Johnson

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