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Montana players congratulate Justin Strong after he intercepted a Portland State pass toward the end of the game on Saturday at Hillsboro, Oregon to help seal the Grizzlies' victory. Montana won 45-33.

TOM BAUER, Missoulian

MISSOULA — Former Montana Grizzly defensive back Justin Strong was invited to the New Orleans Saints rookie minicamp, per the participant roster released on Saturday. 

He is at the minicamp on a tryout basis, according to the roster, and is wearing No. 37. 

This is the second NFL rookie minicamp Strong has been invited to. He tried out for the New York Jets last weekend. 

Strong, a 5-foot-9, 190-pound safety, totaled 115 tackles in his two-year career at Montana. He also racked up seven career interceptions as a Grizzly.

Three of those picks came in one game — Montana's road matchup against Portland State last season. He earned a hat trick of awards after that game: FCS National Defensive Player of the Week, STATS FCS National Defensive Player of the Week and Big Sky Player of the Week.

He earned Montana's Golden Helmet Award for being the team's hardest hitter during both of his seasons at UM. Before he transferred to Montana, Strong played for Oregon State and started in eight games during his sophomore campaign.

Since the conclusion of his senior season, Strong's been training at Exos in Frisco, Texas.

At Montana's Pro Day, he officially had a 4.55-second hand-clocked 40-yard dash, but several media members and spectators clocked him within the 4.42-4.45 range.

A 4.42-second 40-yard dash would have been tied for 19th among all participants at this year's NFL Scouting Combine and 12th among the defensive backs.

Before his Pro Day, Strong told 406mtsports.com that he'd heard from multiple NFL teams, including the Dallas Cowboys, who were not present at Montana's testing.

Strong is the second player from last year's team to get a look from an NFL team. Former Grizzly cornerback Ryan McKinley signed an undrafted free agent contract with the Tennessee Titans after the NFL Draft. 

Amie Just covers Griz football and Missoula-area preps. Follow her on Twitter @Amie_Just or email her at Amie.Just@406mtsports.com.

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