FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- On ESPN's "NFL Insiders" show last week, colleague Field Yates pointed out that New England Patriots center David Andrews was the only undrafted rookie to play every snap for his team in Week 1.
Andrews built on that in Week 2, going wire to wire in the Patriots' 40-32 victory against the Bills, so the University of Georgia alum has now played all 147 offensive snaps this season.
Multiple factors have contributed to this.
Why he went undrafted: The 6-foot-3, 295-pound Andrews played at the highest level of competition at Georgia, and was a consistent performer over four seasons (40 starts), but his lack of size/mass was a primary factor in him going undrafted. Bill Belichick privately worked him out before the draft and that was a big factor in Andrews deciding to sign with New England as a free agent.
Solid offseason, training camp and preseason: Andrews didn't miss a practice. It was clear by the middle of the preseason that he was an under-the-radar player building momentum. His work against Packers defensive tackle B.J. Raji in the preseason opener was the first indication he had staying power.
Stork and Wendell not ready to go: Ideally from a team perspective, Andrews would have had time to develop behind the scenes, but a concussion suffered by starting center Bryan Stork and the combination of shoulder rehab/illness with veteran Ryan Wendell opened the door for Andrews.
This is what Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels had to say about Andrews when asked on Tuesday:
"David has done everything we've asked him to do since he came here. He came in and worked hard. We don't really care how we get people in our building. They're all the same once they're here, and David has a great attitude, a great work ethic. He's been accountable to his job, dependable each day to know what we need him to do and what we're asking of him this week. And he's played very tough, and he's a smart player who has been able to go in there and handle quite a bit of responsibility at the center position. We just try to put the best guys out there who can help us win, and there are a lot of things that go into that, whether it be experience or size or speed or intelligence or whatever it is. There are a lot of variables that go along with that. And certainly he's had a lot of opportunities, and I think he's made the most of them."