NFL combine: Q & A with Jonathan Dwyer

NFL scouts want to know if straight-line runner Jonathan Dwyer has some wiggle and pass catching ability.  (Johnny Crawford, jcrawford@ajc.com)

NFL scouts want to know if straight-line runner Jonathan Dwyer has some wiggle and pass catching ability. (Johnny Crawford, jcrawford@ajc.com)

Indianapolis — Georgia Tech running back Jonathan Dwyer has already started interviewing with teams and is set to meet with the New England Patriots later on Saturday.

Dwyer weighed-in at 229 pounds and measured 5-foot-11 1/2.

He has interviewed with  St. Louis, San Diego and Denver.

Here’s took some questions at the NFL scouting combine:

Q: I’ve been hearing about your workouts and that you’ve dropped a lot of weight?

A: Coach wanted me to gain some weight when the option offense came in. I realized after the season that my comfortable weight was between 225 and 230. I worked hard and lost some weight. I got down to 225 before I got here and everything. . . I weighed in at a good weight that I wanted to weigh in at.

Q: What was that?

A: 229.

Q: How has the process been for you so far?

A: Actually it’s gone pretty good. A lot of teams have showed some interests. I’m just taking it all in stride and having

some fun with it. I’m enjoying the moment and having some fun.

Q: How are you dealing with the questions about making the transition from Georgia Tech’s offense to a pro styled offense?

A: That’s just a question that is going to continuously be asked. But if they go back to the 2007 season when I was a true freshmen and played behind Tashard Choice. . . It’s nothing new for me to be able to play seven yards deep. I’m just going out there to show them that I’m an athlete and I have the ability to adjust to any kind of offense they throw at me.

Q: Could you talk about your decision to leave school early?

A: The decision for me to leave early was pretty much based on It was pretty much just based me as an athlete. I thought I was ready for the next level. I needed to bring my game to a high level, which is the NFL.

Q: What did you learn from (Tashard) Choice?

A: Just being a good person. How to carry myself on and off the field and how to be a student of the game. That’s what he taught me my freshmen year. Just go in there and watch film instead of just going out there and practice hard, but the mental aspects of wathing film, seeing your keys and to learn more as a player.

Q: The Patriots could use some young fresh legs at runnig back. What have been your talks with them. Do you have any feel for them?

A: I just want an opportunity to showcase what I can do. I think I’m supposed to interview with them today. I had three interviews yesterday with St. Louis, San Diego and Denver. I’ve met a lot of running back coaches and I’ve had a good time meeting them as well.

Q: Have you interview with the Lions?

A: I met coach Sam Gash, the running backs  coach two days ago. I’ll probably have an interview with them. We’ll see how that goes. A lot of these coaches know what type of player that am and what type of ability that I have.

Q: What did he talk to you about?

A: They were asking me how I was able to be successful from a three-point stance and being five yards back. We were just getting to know each other.

Q: What could you bring to a team?

A: I going to be a different kind of back. I could be the back who can make the homerun play. Be physical. Every time I get the ball I’m going to make sure that it’s going to be positive yards. I just want to be a key factor in the offense for our team.

Q: What do you want to run here?

A: Between a 4.4 and 4.5. Around that time. I’ll just try to get around there and then maybe try to run it again at my Pro Day.

Q: There are lot of running backs here vying for the first round. Is it really competitive amongst your guys?

A: A lot of us are just having fun. We are talking and enjoying ourselves. We are joking around right now. I guess once tomorrow gets here, you’ll see more competitiveness. That’s a time where it’s something different. You’re going out there and competing. You are trying to get a job.  Definitely tomorrow, there are going to be a lot of juices flowing. It’s going to be a fun atmosphere to be a part of.

Q: Do you pay any attention to Mock Drafts? Where people project you to go?

A: I’ve seen some. But you really can’t pay too much attention to it because that’s why it’s called a mock draft. You have to put all that stuff behind you and have fun with it. Use it as motivation if you don’t like it. Some guys use it as motivation and some guys use it just to see what people think about them. It’s just something that I looked at. Since it’s gotten closer to this time, I haven’t been looking at them. Just trying to enjoy the moments and have some fun with it.

Q: Where have you been working out at?

A: I’ve been working out at Michael Johnson’s Performance Center in Dallas, Texas.

Q: You seem to hit your stride mid-season, the Wake Forest and Vanderbilt games, you put up some really big numbers. Did you feel like developed as the season went on? Did you feel more productive?

A: I felt more productive. I felt that I was getting more of a rhythm. That’s the thing with a running back, once you get into that one rhythm you have a confidence, a swagger about yourself that you’re going to go out there and make some plays and make something happen.

Q: Where you learning something along the way about your game?

A: I don’t think I was learning too much. I was just trying to do what I was supposed to do. Just do my role. That’s all you can do.

Q: What is your relationship with (Clemson C.J.) Spiller?

A: We have a close relationship actually. We are friends on and off the field. We talk to each other all through the season. We’ve talked to each other through this whole process. Pretty much, if you see us around in a group, he’s either by me or I’m by him, It’s a close relationship, but it’s a competitive relationship as well.

Q: How did you all develop that relationship?

A: We met each other at the ACC Kickoff this past season, pre-season. We’ve been friends every since then.

Q: What do you think about some of the things he does?

A: He’s a great player. He makes some things happen. He’s fast. He has agility. He’s explosive. He’s that whole all-around threat.

Q: You all compare your styles?

A: Not verbally together. We let everybody else handle that. We just enjoy each other’s game. He has his thinks he like about me and I have my things I like about him.

Q: Before going to Kell High, did you play in the area around Cobb County?

A: Yes, I grew up playing for the Marietta Blue Eagles and the Blackwell Bears. (Wonder how he did against the mighty Smyrna Spartans!!!)

Q: In terms of trying to separate yourself from the rest of the RB class, some guys are really grading you impressively high compared to some of the others. Do you feel that way inside of it?

A: In this whole process of going through interviews you have to separate yourself from the other guys and express what you can bring to the table. Like myself, if you’re looking for someone to be a complete back who’s able to pass block, run inside and run outside. You have to be the type of guy that they want or need.  If they need a guy to make a big play, I can be that guy. If you need a guy to return kicks, I can play special teams. That’s me. If a team makes a mistake and doesn’t draft me, I’m going to be a handful every time that we play them. That’s just the type of a mindset I bring to every interview I go in.

Q: There’s been plenty of talk about you being a low to the ground runner and having a well-rounded game. At the NFL level, does that present an incredible challenge to be all of that?

A: Even when you reach your goal of playing in the NFL, you still have things in your game that you have to perfect. There are still some things that I want to get better at. That’s just something I’ll have to sell them on. We’ll see. I think I’ll be a productive player. Only time will tell. I’m just going to continue to work hard and give it everything that I’ve got.

Q: Are you doing all of the drills?

A: Yes, I’m doing everything.

36 comments Add your comment

CJDawg

February 27th, 2010
1:55 pm

So you other sickos can not be…FIRST

CJDawg

February 27th, 2010
1:57 pm

Does Dwyer have enough speed to make it in the NFL? I am asking because I really don’t know. I know he is a heckuva runner, but I don’t know his 40 time. I know that is not necessarily the most critical element but it does have SOME credence. Any answers?

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

February 27th, 2010
2:16 pm

As a Dawg Fan, Dwyer will definetly make an impact with whatever team he signs for. Good kid and hard runner. My guess he would go late 1rst or somewhere in the 2nd round. Good Luck!!

waynester

February 27th, 2010
2:27 pm

If he goes in the 1st it’ll be to HOU or SD if Spiller is already taken. Not bad at all Mr. Dwyer, and that’s from a die-hard Dawg!

GT in Gold Town

February 27th, 2010
2:29 pm

Well one thing I loved about JD when he played at Tech was watching him break through the first line of defenders, DT’s and LB’s, and then out running conners and safeties game after game. He has break away game speed. But as all Dawg fans should know with Knowshon, timed speed (4.62), doesn’t make you any less of a great running back.

waynester

February 27th, 2010
2:51 pm

Didn’t mean to imply that he wasn’t great just that he & CJ are different style backs and wouldn’t fit in with the needs of all the teams picking before #20 HOU. The guy from Fresno St is also getting lots of looks late in the 1st. Peace…

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GTGuy44

February 27th, 2010
7:41 pm

All I know is that I never saw Jon Dwyer caught from behind. I suspect he will run a 4.4 40 yard dash.

GTGuy44

February 27th, 2010
7:42 pm

Also he must be really well built because he certainly does not look to be 229 pounds.

gtgs

February 27th, 2010
8:21 pm

He ran a 4.35 his sr year in HS..he has gained alot of muscle..i think he is still faster than Bay-Bay..we will see..

Larry

February 27th, 2010
8:27 pm

Not only is he physical and fast, he’s also bright and comes from TWO good parents in Cobb County.

This is one African American kid you will not see with earrings, tattoos that the dumb, illiterate and insecure feel they must have to attract the ladies. He’ll use his intellect to attract the attractive AND intelligent ladies!

JIM

February 27th, 2010
8:58 pm

This is one African American kid you will not see with earrings, tattoos that the dumb, illiterate and insecure feel they must have to attract the ladies. He’ll use his intellect to attract the attractive AND intelligent ladies! WERE HAVE YOU BEEN,YOU KNOW HOW MANY WHITES ARE WALKING AROUND WITH TATTOOS, AND EARRINGS, IN THERE EARS ? CHECK YOUR OWN BACKYARD IT’S NOT A BLACK THING… WAKE UP DUMMY.

Zach

February 27th, 2010
9:23 pm

Dwyer was FAT at the orange bowl, I’m glad he lost some weight because that might show he actually wants to go to the NFL, since there was no way of telling that last season.

LearnToSpellCheck

February 27th, 2010
11:40 pm

Jeez, this has to be the worst written article I’ve seen in years. Do you know what spell check is? Hell, there is even a grammar check on most computers. Did you go to college? I understand deadlines and all but you are making AJC.com look like the paper of old……a fish-wrapper.

Worm

February 28th, 2010
1:11 am

Not in the same class as Spiller..Will be overweight and a BUST-See the DEisel from LSU..Any tailback would be wise to skip an “option” offense as it ill prepares them for the NFL!

kshizzle

February 28th, 2010
3:17 am

JD, JD, JD, JD, JD!!!!! Jonathan Dwyer should be the first Runnig Back drafted. My guess is he will not be, but like he say’s anyone who passes on him made a mistake.

jacket47

February 28th, 2010
5:13 am

Are we talking about any sec backs here? How about anyone from the pooches? Enough said.

jacket47

February 28th, 2010
5:14 am

Enter your comments here

Turnt Up!

February 28th, 2010
7:28 am

All I’m saying is that at 230lbs and sub 4.5 speed, with great vision – he is a monster! If he can keep his weight there in the 220’s, he will be outstanding. This whole option vs. pro style is a stupid argument. I have seen both, and last time I checked, in both schemes a running back is required to run through holes, break tackles, and outrun defenders as a runner. Imagine JD plying a few yards back, taking a handoff, and not dodging DT’s before getting started. Once he gains steams, he WILL run you over. Also has adequate wiggle…

GTman

February 28th, 2010
7:35 am

Good Luck and God Bless you JD. You were awesome at GT and I enjoyed watching you play. You are one tough son of a gun – got to be to take all those hits up the middle. I wish CPJ would have found more ways to get you the ball out in space. I enjoyed watching you run over dbacks and linebackers and like the other poster I never saw you get caught from behind. Do well and send back lots of cash to your Alma Mater!;-)

mayor bob

February 28th, 2010
8:02 am

Larry..your comments sound like those that would come from someone from West Virginia…

Doofus Dawgs

February 28th, 2010
8:44 am

Let’s see…Billy Sims, Earl Campbell, Mike Rozier…all wishbone backs, all great NFL backs. Guess the dawg goobers will have to come up with another excuse. Especially after Dwyer makes a huge splash in the NFL.

Yellow Fuzz

February 28th, 2010
9:54 am

Dwyer has world class speed. And his aptitude is off the charts. If he had gone to Georgia, few would remember Hershal Walker except for chalenging the 65 year old Ole Ball Coach to a fight, MMA fights and split personality disorders.

Dwyer definitely > Walker

Yellow Fuzz

February 28th, 2010
9:55 am

Yellow Fuzz

February 28th, 2010
9:54 am
Dwyer has world class speed. And his aptitude is off the charts. If he had gone to Georgia, few would remember Hershal Walker except for challenging the 65 year old Ole Ball Coach to a fight, MMA fights and split personality disorders.

Dwyer definitely > Walker

Yellow Fuzz

February 28th, 2010
9:57 am

Prediction?

Taken in first 2 rounds, finalist for NFL Rookie of the year. Pro Bowl by 2nd season. Great role model for entire playing career.

Is Dwyer fast enough??

February 28th, 2010
9:58 am

Dwyer was second in the state at 100M in HS. HIs 40 time may not be better than 4.5 but his 15 to 80 time is AWESOME. NEVER caught from behind on all of his long runs and there were SEVERAL. And those that paint him as a straight line runner didn’t watch him play. My only question about him is his intensity. Jonathon in a super nice kid, he just needs to lose the ‘niceness’ ALL OF THE TIME on the field.

He will be a great back in the NFL!

Yellow Fuzz

February 28th, 2010
10:06 am

Prediction?

1. Taken in first 2 rounds
2. Finalist for NFL Rookie of the year.
3. Pro Bowl by 2nd season.
4. Great role model for entire playing career.
5. Retires wealthy
6. Gets his Tech degree by age 40
7. Represents a Fortune 500 company and draws an NFL pension his entire life
8. Probably helps coach his son’s youth teams
9. Gives enormous ammount back to his community
10. Helps recruit the state for Tech.

Robert Barron

February 28th, 2010
12:17 pm

I was glad to see all four Jackets turn pro since mediocre coaches like Womack make 288K, not to mention the multimillionaires the head coaches become. With Nesbit around, it will make reloading a lot easier.

RomeDawg

February 28th, 2010
1:41 pm

He’s one heckuva player and seems to have a good head on his shoulders. Wish him all the luck in the NFL. I am sure he’ll be fine.

Yellow Fuzz maybe a bit delusional about the “Walker thing”. That is such an odd comparison I probably shouldn’t even comment on it. Stupid is as stupid does and Yellow Fuzz, that is just plain ol’ stupid.

Tech Mom

February 28th, 2010
2:22 pm

To “Is Dwyer fast enough??” – knowing Jonathan personally I can say that he will never lose that “niceness”….it’s who he is. That coupled with his clean image, brought alot to the world of collegiate football, and I’m sure that he will bring it to the NFL. We need more of his kind of niceness, not less. He’ll be a great role model. He knows people are watching him all the time, and he’ll act accordingly. If only we could say that of all the guys.

GO JACKETS

February 28th, 2010
2:50 pm

Somebody edit this blog. It’s hard to even read and makes Dwyer seem like he can barely speak. Please do him justice and correct this blog including the questions that make no sense as written.

RomeDawg

February 28th, 2010
4:30 pm

Prediction?

Yellow Fuzz is arrested for stalking Dwyer and at the time of his arrest is found to have 8 of his jock straps that he wears under his clothes and smells while going into the bathroom at work.

Gt4ever

February 28th, 2010
6:09 pm

He is the best running back in the country, PERIOD!

gtislame

March 1st, 2010
10:48 am

dwyer has a 4.7 40-yard dash???? That’s slower OL and TE’s at the combine. 3rd round at best!!

no wonder he only ran for 33 yards against UGA!!!!!

HAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAA!!!!

UGA 30 – GT 24!!!!

LOSERS!!

Georgia Tech For Life

March 1st, 2010
12:18 pm

JD is going to the SD Chargers with the 19th pick, no doubt. SD just got rid of LT and Sproles. Once I saw they cut Sproles, I knew they were gunning for JD.