Jermaine Cunningham set for his private workout

91031 Jacksonville, FL.  Georgia quarterback Joe Cox gets up after being sacked by Florida defensive end Jermaine Cunningham at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium in Jacksonville, FL.   Brant Sanderlin bsanderlin@ajc.com

91031 Jacksonville, FL. Georgia quarterback Joe Cox gets up after being sacked by Florida defensive end Jermaine Cunningham at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium in Jacksonville, FL. Brant Sanderlin bsanderlin@ajc.com

Florida defensive end Jermaine Cunningham, of Stephenson High, has recovered from shoulder surgery and will hold a private workout for NFL teams at 11 a.m. Wednesday in Gainesville.

He suffered a torn labrum in practice. The injury forced him to  miss the Senior Bowl and he couldn’t work out at the NFL scouting combine.

“I feel 100 percent,” said Cunningham, who started 38 of 45 games over his college career.

Cunningham had surgery on Jan. 5. Dr. James Andrews did the surgery and projected a full recovery.

Cunningham is 6-foot-3 3/8 and 266 pounds. Some teams consider him a defensive end and others like him as an outside linebacker.

“To me, it’s all the same,” Cunningham said. “I see myself as a football player. As long as I get on the field, when the ball is snapped, I’m going for the person with the ball.”

Cunningham said he played both with his hand in the ground and standing up in a linebacker stance for the Gators.

Jermaine Cunningham back in his Stephenson High days.

Jermaine Cunningham back in his Stephenson High days.

“I’m very comfortable with both of them,” Cunningham said.

In addition to the private workout, Cunningham has a visit set up with the St. Louis Rams and has been receiving interest from nearly 20 teams in the league.

Cunningham plans to put on a show for the scouts who come see his private workout. He still hates that he had to pull out of the Senior Bowl and couldn’t perform any drills at the combine.

“It was real tough because I was looking forward to it,” Cunningham said. “At the end of the day, I had to worry about myself. I just had to get healthy and go on from there.”

Cunningham is happy with his choice to attend Florida. He picked the Gators over Georgia and Auburn.

At Florida, Cunningham had 34 tackles for loss, 19.5 sacks, seven pass deflections, five forced fumbles, one interception and a fumble recovery.

“I felt it went pretty good, coming out with two national championship rings, two SEC championship rings and a college degree,” Cunningham said. “It was more than I expected.”

It’s unlikely, that Cunningham will stay at home and play for the Falcons. He’s projected as a second round pick and the Falcons don’t have a pick in the second round.

SHAPRTON GETS WORKOUT: The Falcons held a personal workout for Miami linebacker Darryl Sharpton, who is 5-foot-11 3/8 and 236 pounds. He’s a run-and-hit, undersized linebacker. He’s projected to go in the fourth or fifth round.

Last season, the Falcons took Miami linebacker Spencer Adkins (5-11,242) in the sixth round.

58 comments Add your comment

Willy

April 6th, 2010
7:38 am

As long as we get a pass rush this season I don’t care where it comes from.

silky slimm

April 6th, 2010
7:47 am

d led who the hell is this well i guess he will be a 3rd round option just in case they go lb,wr, or og . That cool long as they get one lol go falcons. Daryl Sharpton i heard of him we need more player from the U they have a knack for defense.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Charles Olson. Charles Olson said: RT @AJCFalcons: Jermaine Cunningham set for his private workout http://bit.ly/cC49Nf [...]

KeithB

April 6th, 2010
9:20 am

I think this guy will be a steal for someone late in the draft. He has been somewhat overshadowed during his college career, and is a solid player with a good motor.

GetwhatUpayfor

April 6th, 2010
9:20 am

I agree with WILLY……..just get a pass rush.

Fire Paul Hewitt.

Unca' Bob

April 6th, 2010
10:08 am

D-Led,

A little off topic but, have you heard any feedback on R McClain?

Josh B

April 6th, 2010
10:22 am

I like all the guys that the Falcons have brought in for private workouts. I’m good just as long as we go OLB or some type of hybrid OLB/DE in the draft

FalconsFan284

April 6th, 2010
11:19 am

This is just due dilligence on the Falcons part. I really don’t see them making a move to get this guy. There are better LB/DE prospects that will be available in the Second and possibly Third rounds.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
12:01 pm

I think it appears that way to everyone FF284. With 8 picks I can’t see them taking more than 1 DE. Something like 1DE,1DT,2OL,1WR,2LB,1CB/KR specialist. Not specifically in that order.

Sly Ty

April 6th, 2010
12:10 pm

I hope TD doesn’t take this guy, he like TE Jermaine Gresham has an injury history, let us stay away from those types this time. LT Sam Baker is starting to look like a bust, just like Peria Jerry, and William Moore.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 6th, 2010
12:16 pm

Unca Bob: No details on McClain’s visit. Just bizarre because he won’t be there at 19. Unless Falcons move up to get him.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
12:19 pm

If we go Graham in the first, I now know a few 3rd rd LB’s being considered…Bowman/Edds etc. If we go Weatherspoon in the 1st what are some of the 3rd rd DE’s we are considering or would we wait till later in the draft to get a DE.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
12:30 pm

Too hasty on Jerry & Moore there sly ty. It usually takes 2-3 years to determine a draft’s bust status. Jerry did have an injury history though if I remember correctly. I hope they stay away from injury prone players, and as far as Sam Baker…He just needs some more conditioning & maybe play guard or RT. Definately not a LT.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Darryl Ledbetter, D. Orlando Ledbetter. D. Orlando Ledbetter said: Florida Gator Jermaine Cunningham, of Stone Mountain, Ga., is set to workout for NFL scouts. His shoulder has healed. http://bit.ly/akURnO [...]

Unca' Bob

April 6th, 2010
12:36 pm

Thanks D-Led. Due diligence?

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 6th, 2010
1:07 pm

He could slip. But Parcells is crazy about him. He does have Crohn’s disease and that could scare some folks off.

BFALCON

April 6th, 2010
1:08 pm

DOB, Watch for a possible trade down from the #19 spot for the Falcons. This is considered by most to be a deep draft. The Falcons need to get a 2nd rnd pick. Possible trade partners include NE, Bal, Phil.Especially NE, they have three 2nd rnd picks. My source tells me that the Falcons brass is torn between Graham,Weatherspoon, J.Pierre Paul and Pouncey. I also here the Falcons have no interest in Free Agent DE Alex Brown. Though I tend to like him. Also, do not be surpised if Facons make a trade for an established # 2 WR or Draft one in rnd two if they get a 2nd rnd pick.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
1:32 pm

I guess I could be happy with any of those 4 guys but not sold on JPP. Been nice to see him do those backflips over a defender to the quarterback. Say we do trade out of the first for 2 of New England’s 2nds. What does that equate to…maybe Jerry Hughes and Arrelious Benn in the second then continue on in the 3rd with a DE then Tenant with the comp pick. Maybe even a Sean Lee in the 2nd.

Feeder

April 6th, 2010
2:12 pm

Soooo, maybe we should go after Haynesworth. He loves the south. He and J Babs can stuff the middle so our edge rushers can “tee off’ when necessary. He would only cost us maybe a 2nd round pick in next year’s draft. Our Defense would be solidified when we draft that much needed LB/DE this year. Just throwing it out there.

Marcus

April 6th, 2010
2:26 pm

DOL,
I am thinking we get the OLB we want or BPA………then draft any number of developmental DE prospects in the 3rd round or below …….. I think a lot of guys will drop after the initial pickings of the top 3-4 guys. A lot of names including Cunningham, Ole Miss’ Greg Hardy, USF George Selvie, seem to be dropping after some pre-season hype last fall.

ckgator

April 6th, 2010
3:13 pm

This says it all. UF: the only place for real blue-chippers…

“I felt it went pretty good, coming out with two national championship rings, two SEC championship rings and a college degree,” Cunningham said. “It was more than I expected.”

tpay

April 6th, 2010
3:31 pm

Dol,
Outside linebacker sahould be primary goal. If not available, take best player of value to team progress. Why do we need developmental DE when Sidbury, Bierman and Lucas are being developed now.

South ga boy in the atl

April 6th, 2010
4:01 pm

DOL. After seeing some of these 3rd rd OLB workout performances and hearing some experts take on them, I am not quite as queezy about Spoon not being there at 19 or if we trade down. I blieve we can get a quality OLB. My problem is this: we are full of, I am afraid, quality ie, solid players on defense with little or no playmakers. Outside of Abe, who had an off yr, name another elite player at a playmaker position. (corner, DT, or edge rusher DE/OLB) I defy you. I realize we signed Dontay, which I am all for because he was the best corner available in FA, but he may just be solid and not elite. Elite, almost always, means 1sr rd draft choice or top dollar FA. We have an earfull of solid on Def. We have to have a couple of elites and that’s why we must have Spoon or Graham in rd 1, even if we have to move up, and not a CENTER !!! You thought I wasn’t going to go there didn’t you lol. Love your work though, DOL.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
4:14 pm

Haynesworth is a big pay guy. Lots of $ tied up in him, i think it was around $40mil guarantied of which he just got 21mil i think. So that leaves what….20mil or so more left that could come out to 4 years or so we’d keep him with that much $ left. That move would waste the Jerry pick & where would it leave JA who seems to be a presence at DT. Dont see that happening…..He dont even want to show up for off season conditioning. No its not required but a guy you pay like that you sure want him to show up.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
4:24 pm

Lofton will be a playmaker this year, our rotation of DT’s will generate penetration translating to Abe & Biermann T’n off on QB’s. We don’t know what we got with Dunta yet. Jerry Hughes & Sean Lee can be playmakers in the second if we work a deal with New England. IMO we should still get Graham and move into second for Hughes/Lee but that would cost us another pick & if we trade our 1 we gain a pick. Hard decision.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 6th, 2010
4:30 pm

South ga boy in the atl — Lofton, DeCoud, Babineaux and Jerry appear to be headed toward elite status. Moore has a high upside and you have to keep an eye on Sidbury. I’ll just take the center ribbing for now!!!

ReptilesRule

April 6th, 2010
4:36 pm

“It was more than I expected”. I think almost all of us Gators can testify to that.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 6th, 2010
4:43 pm

Others are starting to come around on the notion of drafting my man Maurkicke Pouncey —
http://www.fanfeedr.com/nfl/2010/04/06/maurkice-pouncey-could-be-a-first-round-pick-for-falcons

Delbert D.

April 6th, 2010
5:00 pm

Baker a flop at LT? Gee, it must be his “short arms”, as pre-draft prognosticators said. Maybe his arms are long enough to be a center. I’ll bet Smitty and company know what’s best, as opposed to the blogging experts who have never put their knuckles on the ground.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
5:03 pm

If Graham, Spoon, are gone I’d go with Pouncy. I’d go with him over JPP. A dominant O-line is the most underated, unsexy way to spend your first rd picks. At 19 there aren’t any guarantied players available……….except Pouncy. Even so I still would go with one of the first two i mentioned.

south ga boy in the ATL

April 6th, 2010
5:14 pm

DOL I hope your right. I have hopes for Lofton, Jerry, and DeCloud to become elite, but YOu have to admit that those are hopes right now. Jerry has played one game, Decloud has started one season and Lofton has two under his belt, and they have made SOLID contributions, but we have to have 2 or 3 elite players to have a top tier Def. When I say Pittsburgh Def, YOu think Troy P, James F. (Elite). If I say Baltimore DEf, YOu think Ed Reed, Ray Lewis. (Elite) With no 2nd rd. pick we have to take a shot at an Elite Def player. And then hope that some or at least one of those players you mentioned, DOL, become elite.

TampaGator

April 6th, 2010
6:06 pm

Gunningham is a decent player, but he is not not is not a top 3 rounds draft pick. He would be a nice pick for a good team that needs a “situational” pass rusher…someone like New England (watch him get picked by them). Florida has a rich history of putting really good DEs into the NFL..several all-pros and at least one into the NFL Hall of Fame. Dunlap, if he gets his motor going all the time, is going to be a terror in the NFL. He is probably the most athletic DL talent in the draft…and I didn’t say the best talent…just the most athletic talent available in the draft. But it is all about his motor????

tidog

April 6th, 2010
6:14 pm

Jason Campbell backup qb?

FalconsFan284

April 6th, 2010
7:16 pm

Pouncey is being projected to go to Pittsburgh. Poor DOL his man is going to play in the Steele City.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
7:33 pm

Yep, sure seems that way FF284. Only way I see them passing him up is if a Joe Haden or somebody projected in the top 10 or so fall to them. Highly unlikely.

PlanB

April 6th, 2010
7:37 pm

I agree with Willy, also. Get a pass rush!!!! Whatever it takes. I don’t think I can’t take another year without one, and we apparently don’t like to blitz. What’s the scoop on not persduing A. Brown?

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
8:53 pm

If we get Spoon, will that improve our pass rush? Is that new “assistant defensive coach/whatever his position is” going to help BVG call some more blitzs. Maybe when we did blitz we didn’t get enough pressure to keep blitz’n.

fanATicaL

April 6th, 2010
9:27 pm

Has anybody heard about whether Alex Brown,formerly with the Bears.Will he make a stop here in Atlanta ?

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
9:57 pm

Not sure if he’s coming here but he’s meeting with the Saints tonight.

FalconsFan284

April 6th, 2010
10:11 pm

FanATical– The Falcons are not interested in Alex Brown.

Chris– We couldn’t blitz last year because our coverage was so poor. With Spoon and Duanta we should see the D start turning the quarter and becoming a top 10 defense.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
10:26 pm

Thats what im hoping for FF284, i’ve had to learn to seperate the passionate pick [Graham] from the logical more advantageous one [Spoon]. I also know the production for most first year DE’s isn’t there. In an ideal world i’d like to have them both. TD should pull some Patriot magic and get us 2 1st rounders/3 2nds in a year or so down the road. It’s only 15 days away, we’ll know soon enough.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 6th, 2010
10:38 pm

Spoon is stuck in Memphis tonight, at least according to a tweet he sent earlier this evening.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
10:45 pm

I’m almost as excited about Jerry, Moore, and Douglas’ return & Decoud, Biermann, and Lofton’s progression as I am our players in the draft. I expect great things from those players this year.

chris taylor

April 6th, 2010
10:51 pm

You sure stay on top of things DOL, can’t wait to hear your inside knowledge on his & McClain’s visits here. Wonder if he’s gonna go “Ham” again.

chris taylor

April 7th, 2010
12:22 am

DOL, I have a request if you feel like researching it. Has a C ever been drafted in the first rd & who? If C’s are never drafted in the first how does Pouncy have such a high 1st rd grade on everyone’s big board? Is this guy that good?

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 7th, 2010
12:54 am

Chris Taylor — Damian Woody, went 17th in the first round of the 1999 draft and Jeff Faine, 21st, in 2003 are the two that come to mind with out researching the entire history of the position. Exceptional stud centers can go in the first round. Pouncey is a stud. Yes, he is that good.

Box

April 7th, 2010
1:11 am

In regards to Haynesworth, if you can’t be happy and play for $100 million, we don’t want anything to do with you.

Big Ray

April 7th, 2010
1:37 am

Come on now, D. Ledbetter.

We know you LOVE you some Pouncey, but did you read the tail end of the article you linked?

“He’s really only a good value here if teams in front of the Falcons go out of their way to steal the prospects who top the team’s big board. Pouncey’s been linked to the Falcons in the past and I’m sure the interest is legitimate, I still can’t picture the team making offensive line a higher priority than defense, even if I do believe we need an infusion of young talent there. In a year where the Falcons had really built the team into a vision ordained by Our Most Glorious Comrade, Pouncey might have been the likeliest pick. Where we still don’t have the ability to invest early picks in luxuries, I doubt very much that this will happen.”

:)

chris taylor

April 7th, 2010
2:12 am

As I look at Faine & Woody they share 2 probowls between the two and neither are still with their respective draft teams. If 1st rd C’s are so rare and can anchor an o-line for a decade or better how come those 2 1st rd C’s didn’t stay with a team more than 3 years or so? Hypothetical question. Was really hoping for some concrete evidence pointing in Pouncy’s direction. Guess there is nothing concrete in the NFL.

LMAO

April 7th, 2010
6:41 am

Hey D.Orlando Bedwetter u love 2 write about the guys from Florida!Its about time for another love-letter article about Pouncey isnt it?

(The Florida players are going to the NFL. I have to write about them. Will have a Jermaine Cunningham update later today. –dol)