Georgia tight end Orson Charles was arrested by Athens-Clarke County Police early Friday morning for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol and driving at a minimum speed, according to multiple reports.
According to the Athens-Clarke County Jail reporting log, Orson Reuben Charles, 21, was booked at 4:31 am. He was released on bond less than an hour later.
Charles, ranked as NFLDraftScout.com's No. 3 tight end for the 2012 draft, left Georgia after a junior season in which he caught 45 passes for 574 yards and five touchdowns and earned All-SEC accolades from conference coaches and media, alike. It marked the third year in a row in which Charles had been acknowledged by the SEC, as he earned Second Team honors in 2010 (26-422-2) and received a spot on the conference's All-Freshman team in 2009 with 23 catches for 374 yards and two scores.
Charles is a natural hands receiver with good overall athleticism. At only 6-2, 251 pounds, he lacks the bulk most teams prefer at the position. He is, however, a feisty blocker, and led all tight ends tested at the Combine this year with 35 repetitions of 225 pounds in the bench press drill. Scouts had hoped that he'd run faster at his Pro Day to perhaps pull away from the other two tight ends -- Clemson's Dwayne Allen and Stanford's Coby Fleener -- generating talk as the top tight end prospect in the draft. A year after Rob Gronkowski and Jimmy Graham proved just how effective tight ends can be as matchup nightmares, no tight end in the 2012 class is generating universal first round grades from clubs.
The arrest is an obvious blight on his record and one that NFL teams will want to investigate thoroughly. Charles had been considered a high character player prior to this arrest, according to a league source, who cited the fact that Charles was voted a team captain, was a recipient of one of the team's Offensive Coaches Leadership Awards and had earned a spot on the SEC Academic Honor Roll during the fall.