Tag:Georgia Bulldogs
Posted on: January 11, 2012 1:15 pm
Edited on: January 11, 2012 3:59 pm

Georgia TE Charles going pro

Georgia tight end Orson Charles  plans to enter the 2012 NFL Draft according to an ESPN report.

Charles, an All-SEC tight end as a junior, led Georgia in receiving with 572 yards on 44 catches with five touchdowns.

He's NFLDraftScout.com's third-ranked tight end, behind Dwayne Allen of Clemson and Stanford's Coby Fleener. All three have first-round potential, though at this point NFLDraftScout.com's Rob Rang and Dane Brugler only feature one tight end in their respective mock drafts.

Charles, listed by Georgia at 6-3 and 242 pounds, lacks the bulk most teams prefer at the position. He is very agile for his size, however, and is a much more physical blocker than his size would indicate. In fact, scouts give Charles a higher grade as a blocker than they do the 6-6, 245 pound Fleener. 

Charles said after the Outback Bowl that he was awaiting feedback from the NFL Draft Advisory Board. Rang listed Charles on his Top 32 Big Board for much of the 2011 season, though Charles has slipped down Rang's rankings slightly over the past month. At this point, Rang grades Charles as a solid second round value.

Quarterback Aaron Murray, who is a redshirt sophomore, also requested an evaluation from the board but isn't expected to leave.

Posted on: April 27, 2011 2:59 pm

Houston's stock was slipping before drug test

ATLANTA -- Even before the Tuesday report that Justin Houston had failed a drug test at the combine two months ago, the draft stock of the University of Georgia defensive end/outside linebacker was sliding precipitously.
How far?
Personnel directors or general managers for two teams told The Sports Xchange that they now have Houston graded on their boards as a third-round selection. Several other teams confirmed that they rank the former Bulldogs star, once regarded as a strong prospect for the bottom half of the first round, as a second-rounder.
NFLDraftScout.com has Houston rated as the fifth-best outside linebacker prospect and No. 55 overall.
"But even before (the drug report), we didn't have a first-round grade on him," said one NFC personnel chief. "So it's going to be interesting now to see if that hurts him even more. Our big thing is, 'What is he, an end or a linebacker?' I think that a lot of teams are saying the same thing. ... And you've got so many ends, you know?"
Although he is one of only 10 players in this year's draft pool who registered 10 or more sacks in 2010, Houston appears to be a prospect with a lot of questions. There have been, according to scouts, some concerns about his effort at times. But even more perplexing for teams is the debate about whether he is best suited to play end in a 4-3 front or outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme.
At 6-feet-2 7/8 and 270 pounds, scouts seem to wonder if Houston is stout enough to hang in against the run. And while his 4.62-second 40-yard dash time appears plenty fast enough, and there is no denying Houston's explosiveness off the edge, his ability to defend versus the pass has raised skepticism. Said one area scout: "He seems fluid moving forward, but not dropping off. I know people can say that you can teach a guy to cover, but look at his linebacker drills, and you're not sure."
Houston, 22, had 56 tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss, 10 sacks and 44 quarterback hurries for Georgia in 2010, playing principally as a standup end in the team's new 3-4 alignment. For his career, he notched 110 tackles and 19 sacks.
In 2009, Houston was suspended by UGA coach Mark Richt for two games, allegedly for violating the program's substance abuse policy.
Foxsports.com reported Tuesday that Houston tested positive for marijuana in the drug screening that accompanied the February combine. Several NFL teams, and two sources close to Houston, confirmed the report.

--Len Pasquarelli, Senior NFL Writer, The Sports Xchange

Posted on: April 26, 2011 10:34 am
Edited on: April 26, 2011 11:29 am

Report: Houston, Ballard failed combine drug test

Georgia outside linebacker/defensive end Justin Houston and Iowa defensive lineman Christian Ballard failed drug tests at the scouting combine in Indianapolis in February, according to a report by FOXSports.com.

Houston is a converted defensive end who registered 10 sacks as a junior in a pass-rushing role created for him by the Bulldogs' defensive staff, and he jumped on the opportunity to leave Georgia after his junior season. He has been considered a late-first or second-round draft value and is the No. 44-rated player overall by NFLDraftScout.com.

Houston has been an intriguing prospect for 3-4 teams because he already has a season of experience rushing off the edge, compared to most converted defensive ends who need to make a completely new transition to the role in the NFL. However, he's also considered a one-trick pony who is more athlete than football player at this point and might lack the explosiveness to develop into an elite pass rusher in the NFL.

Ballard has been projected as a second-round pick and is the 59th-rated prospect by NFLDraftScout.com, including the 10th-rated player in a very deep defensive end class. He has experience inside and outside and plays with explosion and hustle. A tight end when he arrived at Iowa, Ballard is excellent in one-on-one drills but struggles to make impact plays once the whistle blows.

Neither player has any previous records involving marijuana, according to the FOXSports.com report. If the reports of a failed drug test are true, it could significantly impact both players, who were already entering the draft fighting the dreaded 'tweener label as excellent athletes who might lack an ideal position in the NFL.

--Derek Harper, NFLDraftScout.com Executive Editor

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