LINCOLN — Josh Banderas is heading to Denver, and it wasn’t long after agreeing to a free-agent contract with the Broncos on Saturday that the linebacker was texting former Nebraska teammate Andy Janovich.
Janovich was a Broncos rookie last season after the fullback was a sixth-round draft pick a year ago.
“He didn’t know,” Banderas said. “He was excited for me to get out there.”
Banderas was among the former Huskers agreeing to free-agent deals or tryouts Saturday night after the seven-round draft was completed.
Nate Gerry was the only former NU player drafted, going to Philadelphia in the fifth round as a linebacker.
Banderas said the Broncos were among three teams making offers, and he noted that they didn’t draft or sign any linebackers as free agents. The Denver roster also includes former NU linebacker Zaire Anderson and defensive end Jared Crick.
“Through the last couple weeks Denver had called a couple times and told me they were interested,” Banderas said. “After the draft was over they got in touch with my agent, and I just felt that was going to be the best spot.”
Banderas played 47 games and made 31 starts as a Husker and was an NU captain last season. The Lincoln Southwest graduate had a team-high and career-high 93 tackles as a senior.
In recent seasons, Anderson, Trevor Roach and Eric Martin have been NU linebackers making NFL rosters as free agents. And 2012 second-round draft pick Lavonte David has been an All-Pro (2013) and Pro Bowl pick (2015) for Tampa Bay.
“There’s a lot of good Husker linebacker paths I can hopefully follow and match,” Banderas said.
Putting on a Broncos helmet, however, will require a brief adjustment.
“I’ve always been a Chiefs fan, so it’s going to be a little different going on the other side,” Banderas said.
Some other free-agent notes from Saturday, compiled through World-Herald contacts, news reports or Twitter posts:
» Jordan Westerkamp, the second-leading receiver in NU history, said Saturday night that he was still talking with a couple of teams and had made no final decision.
» Tommy Armstrong, center Dylan Utter and I-back Terrell Newby have tryouts with the Minnesota Vikings. Armstrong has been training as a receiver and running back after making 44 starts at quarterback and breaking a number of Nebraska school records.
» Cethan Carter is headed to Cincinnati. The tight end had attended the NFL combine in February and was considered a draft candidate.
» Former walk-on receiver Brandon Reilly tweeted that he was Buffalo bound and “Excited to start this new chapter” with the Bills.
» Receiver Alonzo Moore signed with Kansas City.
Other notable Midlanders:
» Former Omaha North and Ohio defensive lineman Casey Sayles signed with the Los Angeles Rams.
» Former Husker Avery Moss, who transferred to Youngstown State, was drafted in the fifth round by the Giants.