Green Bay Packers connect with lightly-regarded Indiana State on 2 players

The Green Bay Packers’ Robert Tonyan catches a touchdown pass vs. the Bears in Chicago on Jan. 3. (AP photo)

Indiana State hasn’t had anyone drafted in nearly a quarter-century.

However, two of its former players are a game away from the Super Bowl.

Both play the same position on the same team.

Green Bay Packers tight end Robert Tonyan has emerged as one of the league’s breakthrough performers this season. Dominique Dafney was working at a rooftop patio bar earlier this fall before catching on with the Packers and scoring a TD in their regular-season finale.

“I don’t get to see a lot of Indiana State people in the NFL,” Tonyan said. “It’s not like a ‘Bama or a Clemson where you’re seeing all these guys come in.”

The Packers' Robert Tonyan catches a pass during the first half against the Chicago Bears on Nov. 29 in Green Bay, Wis. (AP file photo)

Both players were undrafted free agents. The most recent draft pick from Indiana State was linebacker Dan Brandenburg, who went to Buffalo in the seventh round in 1996.

Indiana State’s most notable athletic achievement came when Larry Bird led the men’s basketball team to the 1979 NCAA Tournament final.

Tonyan played at Indiana State from 2013-16. He started out as a quarterback, but moved to receiver and set a school record with 20 career touchdown catches.

After beginning his college career at Iowa Western Community College and at Iowa, Dafney was a walk-on at Indiana State. He rushed for 244 yards and scored five TDs in his final college game.


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