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August 9, 2014

Jackson, Millard Intercept Passes in NFL Exhibition Games

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Asa Jackson and Johnny Millard, two of three former Cal Poly football players competing for roster spots in the National Football League, both intercepted passes in exhibition games this week.

Jackson intercepted Blaine Gabbert midway through the second quarter of the Baltimore Ravens' 23-3 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday night at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland.

Jackson, who also intercepted a pass in an exhibition game a year ago, also returned three punts for 13 yards, returned one kickoff 24 yards, made two tackles and deflected two other passes against the 49ers.

Click here for a video clip of Jackson's interception.

A fifth-round (169th overall) selection by Baltimore in the 2012 NFL Draft, Jackson played three games in 2012, making one solo tackle on special teams. He missed the final three games of the regular season and one playoff contest as he was suspended by the NFL for taking Adderall, a medication for Attention Deficit Disorder. The cornerback saw action in one playoff game before missing the final two, including Super Bowl XLVII, with a thigh injury.

Jackson, who also missed the first eight games of the 2013 regular season as a result of a second suspension for the same drug, played in four games during the second half of the season, but did not record any tackles.

Jackson was a four-time first-team All-Great West Conference honoree from 2008-11 at Cal Poly, including Freshman Player of the Year honors in 2008. Jackson notched 199 tackles in four seasons with the Mustangs along with eight interceptions (two in each season) and 32 pass breakups. In his senior campaign, Jackson had 54 tackles (31 solo) with two interceptions, both returned for touchdowns, and seven pass breakups.

Meanwhile, Millard (pictured above) intercepted L Kilgore in the fourth quarter of the St. Louis Rams' 26-24 loss to the New Orleans Saints at Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis, Missouri, on Friday night.

Playing in his first NFL exhibition game, Millard, an undrafted free agent linebacker, also recorded a pair of tackles and deflected a pass.

Millard played in both the East-West Shrine Game and the Medal of Honor Bowl last January. He obtained his bachelor's degree in business administration last fall with a concentration in management and was named to the All-Big Sky Conference second team in November.

Millard was one of three Cal Poly linebackers to record over 100 tackles last season. He notched seven tackles for lost yardage among his 108 total tackles and also earned three pass breakups, an interception and a trio of quarterback hurries.

In his four-year Mustang career (2010-13), Millard (6-3, 240) garnered 300 tackles (150 solos, 150 assists), No. 6 all-time at Cal Poly. He led the Mustangs in tackles as a sophomore with 82 and collected 72 tackles in his junior season. Millard's career totals include 24.5 tackles for lost yardage and 5.5 sacks.

His three career interceptions include one returned 24 yards for a touchdown against McNeese State in 2010, his freshman season.

Former Mustang wide receiver Ramses Barden, who played with the New York Giants for four seasons but sat out the 2013 campaign as a free agent, played for the Jacksonville Jaguars in a 16-10 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Friday night at EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Florida.

Barden did not catch any passes.

In 29 career games with the Giants, Barden caught 29 passes for 394 yards. In 2012, he made his first career start at wide receiver opposite of Victor Cruz at Carolina on Sept. 20 and led the team with nine receptions for 138 yards, both career highs.

A third-round (85th pick overall) draft choice by the Giants in 2009, Barden played at Cal Poly from 2005-08, recording 206 receptions for 4,203 yards and 50 touchdowns, all school records, en route to four All-Great West Conference first-team accolades.

Next week, Jacksonville plays at the Chicago Bears on Thursday night, St. Louis hosts the Green Bay Packers on Saturday afternoon and Baltimore plays at the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday night.