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Iowa defensive tackle Mike Daniels met with the Green Bay Packers at the NFL Scouting Combine and immediately liked the organization. Saturday, the Green Bay Packers liked him right back.
“They seemed to be impressed, and that's about it,” Daniels said.
The Packers drafted Daniels in the fourth round (138 overall) to start a strong draft run by the Iowa Hawkeyes. Five Iowa players were selected from rounds four through seven, giving the program six draft picks for the third straight season.
Daniels will fill a specific role for the Packers, who run a base 3-4 defense. He'll be used primarily in the Packers' nickel defense and line up over the guard and rush the quarterback.
“The thing that jumps out at me is the way he plays the game,” Green Bay Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers said. “He plays the game with quickness, intensity. I think he'll bring a sense of energy with him.”
Daniels promised in a conference call to maintain his trademark intensity with the Packers.
“I just don't stop going,” Daniels said. “If you hustle - I'm not saying something great will happen all the time - but you increase your chances.”
The most surprising fall was from record-breaking wide receiver Marvin McNutt, who many considered a third-round pick. McNutt was the 26th wide receiver taken, going in the sixth round (194th overall) to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Philadelphia Coach Andy Reid said he learned about McNutt with help from defensive coordinator Juan Castillo's son, Greg, who is an Iowa cornerback.
“I think what you see with Marvin is a big, physical receiver with great hands, good character kid, very strong to the ball,” Reid said. “I think when you watch him he's a smooth athlete who is big.
“You talk about making some unbelievable catches, you saw that with this kid. He's good with the yards after the catch. Very productive there and, again, he's a good person.”
McNutt was named the Big Ten's top wide receiver after the 2011 season. He holds Iowa records in for receiving yards in a season (1,315) and career (2,861).
“I see myself as a playmaker. I make plays and do whatever's necessary to get a victory,” McNutt told reporters afterward.
Iowa sent two players to the Washington Redskins. Guard Adam Gettis was selected in the fifth round (141 overall), while defensive back Jordan Bernstine was a seventh-round pick (217 overall). Iowa cornerback Shaun Prater was picked in the fifth round by the Cincinnati Bengals (156 overall).
Prater, a first-team all-Big Ten cornerback, will add depth for the Bengals' secondary and help on special teams, Cincinnati Coach Marvin Lewis said.
“We feel good about the guy he is and how well he has played on special teams as an outside gunner as well,” Lewis said. “He will be able to compete for all of those spots here as well.”
Prater told reporters he watched the entire draft and said “that was the longest wait of my life.”
“I was just hoping that someone would call my name,” he said. “I'm blessed with this opportunity.”
Following the draft, four former Iowa players agreed to terms on free-agent deals. Defensive end Broderick Binns will join the Arizona Cardinals as an outside linebacker/defensive end.
“I'm ecstatic right now,” Binns said. “I'm at a wedding right now (Saturday night), so I'm trying to keep my emotions in. But inside I'm jumping for joy.”
Linebacker Tyler Nielsen will sign with the Minnesota Vikings, according to his agent Neil Cornrich. Cornrich said Iowa punter Eric Guthrie is working on a deal but had not agreed to terms as of Saturday night.
Tackle Markus Zusevics, who suffered a torn pectoral muscle at the NFL Scouting Combine in February, agreed to terms with the New England Patriots, according to his agent Jack Bechta. Tight end Brad Herman also will join the Patriots, according to www.nepatriotsdraft.com.
Iowa tackle Riley Reiff was drafted in the first round Thursday night by the Detroit Lions.