Former Vanderbilt offensive tackle Brian Stamper, who appeared in more football games than any player in team history, signed a free agent contract with the New Orleans Saints on Monday.
As a fifth-year senior in 2007, Stamper returned to start all 12 games at right tackle. The NCAA granted Stamper eligibility for the 2007 season after he underwent back surgery midway through the 2006 campaign. He remained healthy throughout 2007, playing virtually every offensive snap in the majority of Vanderbilt's 5-7 season.
Stamper's signing pushes the total of 2007 Commodore players attempting to make NFL clubs to seven. Three former Commodores, offensive tackle Chris Williams, wide receiver Earl Bennett and linebacker Jonathan Goff, were drafted in the first, third and fifth rounds of the recent NFL Draft, respectively. Since the draft, defensive end/linebacker Curtis Gatewood, linebacker Marcus Buggs and defensive lineman Theo Horrocks, have signed free agent deals: Gatewood with Washington, Buggs with Buffalo, and Horrocks with Jacksonville.
Stamper's entry into the Commodore record books for most games played stems from his appearance in five games in the injury-shortened 2006 season. Because of that, he finished his career with 51 career appearances and 48 career starts, both tops all-time among Commodores.
As a junior in 2005, Stamper earned All-Southeastern Conference honors helping protecting Commodore quarterback Jay Cutler, who went on to receive SEC Offensive Player of the Year honors. He was voted by teammates as the team's 2006 offensive captain prior to the season.
Stamper also earned SEC All-Freshmen honors from the coaches after starting nine games at right tackle as a true freshman.