Hilton Head Prep product Michael Hermann signs with San Diego Chargers

RPI QB received rookie camp invite from Oakland Raiders after NFL draft

mmccombs@islandpacket.comMay 1, 2013 

Former Hilton Head Preparatory School standout Mike Hermann (7) throws a pass during a 2012 game for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, an NCAA Division III college in Troy, N.Y.

FILE -- THE ALBANY (N.Y.) TIMES UNION

The news keeps getting better for Mike Hermann.

Just four days after the former Hilton Head Preparatory School quarterback received a rookie camp invitation from the NFL's Oakland Raiders, he has agreed to a free-agent contract with the San Diego Chargers.

According to the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) website, Hermann is expected to join the Chargers for the team's rookie camp from May 11-13 as well as the OTAs (organized team activities) on May 29-31, June 5-7 and June 11-14.

"I got a phone call from my agent this morning," Hermann said. "We were upfront with the Raiders all along and we told them if a better offer came about, we'd take it instead. The Chargers head coach Mike McCoy told me how excited he was to bring me in. (The Chargers) are more invested in me, they're signing me to an actual deal."

While the Chargers were willing to sign Hermann to a contract, the situation on the field may be better for him in San Diego, as well.

"There are actually only two quarterbacks on the roster, Philip Rivers and the veteran backup Charlie Whitehurst out of Clemson," Hermann said. "And then they drafted Brad Sorenson of Utah State in the seventh round. Technically, we're in the same boat together. But the competition is going to be far less (than Oakland). They're bringing in two other free agent quarterbacks besides myself, as well."

Hermann said the Chargers kept in contact with him even after he wasn't drafted.

"The San Diego quarterbacks coach (Frank Reich) called numerous times throughout the whole process," Hermann said. "He even called me after the draft was over and said they hadn't given up on me and were still interested in bringing me in."

Hermann was a four-year starter and three-time All-Liberty League choice at RPI, including two-time conference offensive player of the year and a two-time all-region choice. He completed 178 of 296 passes for 2,366 yards and 23 touchdowns in 2012. He was intercepted eight times and had an efficiency rating of 147.51.

The 6-foot-5, 250-pound captain accounted for 78.6 percent of the team's offense, leading the Engineers in rushing with 510 yards and seven touchdowns on 107 carries. The team's most valuable player for the second straight season, Hermann led the Liberty League in total offense (318.6 yards per game), total touchdowns (27), passing yards, touchdown passes and passing yards per game (260.0).

Despite playing for an NCAA Division III school, Hermann held tight to his NFL dreams but admitted not being drafted was discouraging.

"I was a little upset after the draft," Hermann said. "I thought someone was going to take a chance and get me in the fifth, sixth or seventh round. It was a little bit of a letdown. But my agent (Jeff Dobin) kept fighting and looking for a better opportunity for me."

Hermann, who is still eight credits short of a degree in business management from RPI, understands that a contract doesn't mean he's a lock to succeed.

"I'm still going to slow play it," Hermann said. "Nothing's guaranteed. I've still got to make the 53-man roster. In some ways, nothing's changed."

Related stories:

Former Hilton Head Prep QB Michael Hermann gets invitation to Oakland Raiders rookie camp (April 29, 2013)

Hilton Head Prep product Mike Hermann invited to play in SC College All-Star Bowl (Dec. 21, 2012)

Former Hilton Head Prep star Hermann being eyed by NFL (Nov. 21, 2012)

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