Trevor Darling's perseverance paid off.
After not being selected in the NFL Draft, the former University of Miami Hurricanes offensive lineman impressed the New Orleans Saints enough to sign him to a contract.
Darling's agent confirmed to the Miami Herald on Thursday that the versatile lineman has signed a three-year rookie deal with the Saints.
"After the draft, I asked Trevor to trust the process and make the most of his opportunities," said Kristal Caron, Darling's agent from CN Sports. "He did just that and I'm super excited for him."
Darling started 40 games in his four-year career with the Hurricanes. The 6-4, 300-pound lineman started all 13 games at left guard last season, helping Miami reach the ACC Championship Game for the first time in program history and earn an Orange Bowl berth for the first time since the 2003 season. He started 24 games at left tackle in 2015 and 2016 after opening his collegiate career with five starts at right tackle as a freshman.
Despite his consistent effort on the offensive line, he didn't hear his name called during the three-day NFL Draft but was given an opportunity to participate in the Cleveland Browns' rookie minicamp.
“Oh man, I’m very excited and very appreciative of the opportunity I have,’’ Darling told the Herald at the time. “I talked to David Njoku. He was just like, ‘Come in ready to work. We’re going to ball out.'’’
After the Browns' rookie minicamp, Darling made his way to New Orleans for their three-day rookie camp.
The Saints must have liked what they saw, as they invited Darling back a month later for their veteran minicamp that ended Thursday. Darling was one of nine players attending the Saints camp on a tryout basis, according to NOLA.com.