NFL scouting combine will feature 31 players from Georgia

 East Carolina's Dwayne Harris, of Tucker High and Stone Mountain, is headed to the combine where he can improve his NFL draft status. (Rhett Butler/Associated Press)

East Carolina's Dwayne Harris, of Tucker High and Stone Mountain, is headed to the combine where he can improve his NFL draft status. (Rhett Butler/Associated Press)

BOUND FOR INDY – Now I can finally pack in peace for the NFL scouting combine.

(NOTE TO SELF: Warm-up suits, one dress suit,  two bow-ties, sneakers, shoes, belt, socks and personal garments. DON’T FORGET THE COAT!!! (Remember the 2008 combine and ESPN’s John Clayton giving you directions to the Burlington Coat factory.)

BACK TO THE BLOG: I finished my review of the 330-plus bios late the other night around 2:30 a.m. I discovered some gems to share with you all. My man Rick Gosselin from the Dallas Morning News is super thorough. He’ll have this three-ring binder with background police reports and, I think, juvenile records on prospects.

He’ll ask, “What happened when you were 14 during that situation at the Wal-Mart?”

My goal is to arrive in Indy with a handle on the guys the Falcons maybe interviewing (Defensive ends, wide receivers and late round quarterbacks are my targets) and on the players with Georgia ties.

In all, there are 31 players with Georgia connections on the official invite list to the NFL scouting combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Some more, like UGA’s Jeff Owens last year, could be added to the event.

Here’s a quick look at the group (Rating and Draft round grades have been provided by NFLDraftScout.com. NFLDraftScout.com is working in conjunction with CBSSports.com to provide the most comprehensive year-round NFL Draft service with a staff of full-time draft experts):

GEORGIA PLAYERS

Linebacker Akeem Dent tries to strip the ball from Auburn running back Ben Tate, who held on for a 2-yard gain. Brant Sanderlin/bsanderlin@ajc.com

Linebacker Akeem Dent tries to strip the ball from Auburn running back Ben Tate, who held on for a 2-yard gain. Brant Sanderlin/bsanderlin@ajc.com

CLINT BOLING, OT (Chattahoochee High): Named All-SEC first team by SEC Coaches and second team by Associated Press. Selected as team’s offensive captain. Draft grade: Third or fourth round.

SHAUN CHAPAS, FB: Selected as the team’s permanent captain at the end of the season. A hard-nosed football player.

VANCE CUFF, DB, (Colquitt County): He has elite speed and plays fast. He’s run the 40-yard dash in 4.24 seconds.

JOSH DAVIS, OT: At 6-6, 310, he has NFL size. He graduated in December with a degree in Speech Communication.

AKEEM DENT, LB, (Douglass High): Started all 13 games and had a team-best 126 tackles, including 6.5 for loss and 2.5 sacks. He  also forced and recovered two fumbles. Graduated in December with a degree in Housing.

DEMARCUS DOBBS, DE, (Savannah Calvary Baptist): Appeared in 13 games making 10 starts, recording 28 tackles and 15 quarterback pressures. Graduated in December with a degree in Consumer Economics.

A.J. GREEN, WR: Appeared in nine games and made eight starts.  Caught a team-leading 57 passes for 848 yards and nine touchdowns.  Check out A.J.’s NFL draft diary. Draft grade: The 4th rated player with a first round grade.

JUSTIN HOUSTON, DE (Statesboro): Considered one of the top hybrid defensive end/linebacker prospects in the country. He was named a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and the Dick Butkus Award and a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award. Draft grade: He’s the 28 rated player and is projected to go in the first or second round.


GEORGIA TECH PLAYERS

Running back Anthony Allen here against the Miami. (Johnny Crawford/AJC)

Running back Anthony Allen here against Miami. (Johnny Crawford/AJC)

ANTHONY ALLEN, RB: Teams like his explosiveness and ability to hit the hole with some authority. Started his career at Louisville.

MARIO BUTLER, CB: Was a two-year starter. Has good striking ability, but there are questions about his range and coverage ability.

JERRARD TARRANT, S: Declared for the draft after his redshirt junior season.  He will have to talk with teams about his sexual assault case even though the charges were eventually dropped.  Draft grade: He’s the 121st rated player overall and is a projected third or fourth round pick.

PLAYERS FROM METRO ATLANTA

Maybe the Falcons will pick Ironhead's little boy, Cameron Heyward (Whitfield Academy/Peachtree Ridge) in the NFL draft. (Associated Press)

Maybe the Falcons will pick Ironhead's little boy, Cameron Heyward (Whitfield Academy/Peachtree Ridge) in the NFL draft. (Associated Press)

DARVIN ADAMS, WR, AUBURN (Harrison): He led Auburn with 52 catches last season. He had 963 yards and seven touchdowns. Draft grade: He’s the 175th ranked player and is a projected fifth rounder.

LADI AJIOBYE, DT, SOUTH CAROLINA (Banneker): Played in all 14 games and had 41 tackles. He had five tackles for loss and two sacks.

MARIO FANNIN, RB, AUBURN (Lovejoy): He was a double-threat quarterback in high school.  He was named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100. Had a solid career at Auburn.

DWAYNE HARRIS, WR, EAST CAROLINA (Tucker): He was a quarterback in high school. He led the Pirates with 101 catches for 1,123 yards and 10 touchdowns last season. Draft grade: He’s the 158th ranked player and  a projected third or fourth round pick.

CHAS HENRY, PK, FLORIDA (East Paulding): He made 7 of 11 field goals last season with a long of 47 yards.

Florida kicker Chas Henry (17) celebrates with teammates after booting the game-winning field goal in overtime against Georgia in an NCAA college football game in Jacksonville, Fla., Saturday, Oct. 30, 2010. (Atlanta Journal & Constitution, Brant Sanderlin)

Florida kicker Chas Henry (17) celebrates with teammates after booting the game-winning field goal in overtime against Georgia in an NCAA college football game in Jacksonville, Fla., Saturday, Oct. 30, 2010. (Atlanta Journal & Constitution, Brant Sanderlin)

Averaged 45.1 yards on 50 punts last season. Draft grade: He’s the 203rd rated player and is a projected sixth round pick as a punter.

CAMERON HEYWARD, DE, OHIO STATE (Whitefield Academy/Peachtree Ridge): Son of former Falcons great and NFL star Craig “Ironhead” Heyward. Was a destructive force for the Buckeyes. Draft grade: He’s the 30th ranked player in the draft and a projected first or second round pick.

BRUCE MILLER, LB, CENTRAL FLORIDA (Woodstock): He was the defensive player of the year in Conference USA and was a first-team all-conference pick.  He started all 14 games and had 63 tackles including a team-high 13.5 tackles for loss, a team-high 8.5 sacks, two interceptions returned for touchdowns, two pass break-ups, 18 quarterback hurries, and two forced fumbles.

CAM NEWTON, QB, AUBURN (Westlake): Won the Heisman Trophy and guided the Tigers to the BCS national championship. He transferred from Florida to Blinn Junior College before landing at Auburn.   In 14 games at Auburn, he completed 185 of 280 passes (66 percent) for 2,854 yards and 30 touchdowns with seven interceptions. He also ran for 1,473 yards and 20 touchdowns out of their spread offense. Draft grade: He’s the 11th ranked player and is projected to be selected in the first round.

Da’ NORRIS SEARCY, DB, NORTH CAROLINA (Towers): Projects as a strong safety in the NFL. Draft grade: He’s the 226th ranked player and is a projected  sixth or seventh round pick.

Georgia Tech's Anthony Egbuniwe (41) sacks North Carolina quarterback T.J. Yates (13) in the fourth quarter. (Johnny Crawford, jcrawford@ajc.com)

Georgia Tech's Anthony Egbuniwe (41) sacks North Carolina quarterback T.J. Yates (13) in the fourth quarter. (Johnny Crawford, jcrawford@ajc.com)

KELVIN SHEPPARD, LB, LSU (Stephenson): He runs 4.64 in the 40, which is excellent for an inside linebacker prospect. Draft grade: The 136th ranked player and is a projected fourth round pick.

DARRYL “BUSTER” SKRINE, CB, TENNESSEE-CHATTANOOGA (Etowah): (Last name pronounced “Screen.”) He has a nice combination of strength and speed. He can bench press 360 pounds, has a 35-inch vertical and runs a 4.22 in the  40-yard dash.

WILL RACKLEY, OG, LEHIGH (Riverdale): A three-time All-Patriot League pick. Projects as a Guard in the NFL. Draft grade: He’s the 100th ranked player and is a projected third rounder.

T. J. YATES, QB, NORTH CAROLINA (Pope): The Marietta native established 37 school records, including career passing yards, single-season passing yards and single-season total offense. Yates led the Tar Heels to an 8-5 mark in 2010, including a 30-27 double-overtime win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl. Draft grade: He is the 230th ranked player and is a projected sixth or seventh rounder.


PLAYERS FROM AROUND THE STATE

Miami linebacker Marcus Robinson (56) and defensive lineman Allen Bailey (57) bring down Virginia Tech quarterback Sean Glennon in the second half. (By J. Pat Carter -- Associated Press)

Miami linebacker Marcus Robinson (56) and defensive lineman Allen Bailey (57) bring down Virginia Tech quarterback Sean Glennon in the second half. (By J. Pat Carter -- Associated Press)

ALLEN BAILEY, DE, MIAMI (McIntosh County Academy): Played some tackle and end last season for the Hurricanes. He’s stout at 6-4, 285 pounds and blazes the 40 in 4.65 seconds. Draft grade: He’s the 62nd ranked player and is a projected second rounder.

JAMES CARPENTER, OT, ALABAMA (Augusta Hephzibah): Started his career at Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College. He started 27 straight games at left tackle for the Crimson Tide. Draft grade: He’s the 93rd ranked player and is a projected third round pick.

RAY DOMINGUEZ, OT, ARKANSAS (Bainbridge High): He selected the Razorbacks over Florida State, South Carolina, Southern Miss, Alabama-Birmingham, Central Florida and Marshall.

MAURICE HURT, OT, FLORIDA (Baldwin): The Milledgeville native played right tackle, right guard and left guard for the Gators last season. He battled injuries early in his career and is coming of a December knee surgery.

MARK LeGREE, FS, APPALACHIAN STATE (Pacelli Catholic): Had five interceptions last season and seven as a junior.

RICARDO LOCKETTE, WR, FORT VALLEY STATE (Monroe): Last season he had 23 receptions for 262 yards.  He averaged 11.4 yards per catch and caught one touchdown pass.   NFL teams are intrigued by his sprinter’s speed and size (6-3, 200).

–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog

Get instant updates on Twitter at AJCFalcons and you can join the Facebook Fan page at AJC Falcons.

48 comments Add your comment

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by twupsies, Georgia News, TimC, g king, Sophia and others. Sophia said: NFL scouting combine will feature 30 players from Georgia: Florida kicker Chas Henry (17) celebrates with teamma… http://bit.ly/idD5cf [...]

Paddy

February 23rd, 2011
6:56 am

A Degree in Housing! Someone pls explain! Not to be outdone, Florida A&M is now offering classes in the history of Rap music. You can’t make this stuff up!!!!!!

1998 Falcons Clip Worth A Look

February 23rd, 2011
7:15 am

Sports Fans: The video below has a fun Falcons clip to help get you through the day. We posted a video plea for Atlanta’s leaders to step-up and lead to help find a buyer or investors to “Keep the Thrashers in Atlanta”. It has some good Falcons, Braves, and Olympic clips demonstrating how sports impacts our civic pride – we would appreciate it if you would forward the link below to a few of your sports buddies – they will like it (especially from 5:20 to the end – worth the effort). Hopefully, the Kincade tweets give us some hope. GO THRASHERS:

http://www.keepthethrashers.com/videokeepthrashersATL.html

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 23rd, 2011
8:04 am

Paddy — He can go and work for H.U.D. (Housing and Urban Development). That’s legit. The Rap Degree could be legit if you couple it with a socially responsibility prong and note how its led a lot of people who have tried to emulate the lifestyle down the path of self-destruction. We talk about Rap in my Communications Law class I teach (Uncle Luke and the First Amendment; Also, Uncle Luke and Obscenity “As Nasty as they wanna be” album cover).

Ced

February 23rd, 2011
8:05 am

@Paddy, What is the difference from classical music and rap music? I have seen classical music classes in most universities. Music is music, and I think classical music is funny to me!!! Please!! Also, UGA is one of the best colleges in the US, so if they offer a degree in housing , then it must be needed. Do research before you laugh, because if you did, you would have noticed that housing is one of the major issues in America today, so why would we not need some type of education for a big part of our country? What were you, a ‘Math’ major?

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 23rd, 2011
8:16 am

Ced — I’ll take a stab at that. It’s usually the beat. Also, instruments are involved in Classical music. In rap you might not have an instrument, so sometimes you can’t really call it music. You need some instruments for there to be music.

i'll raise a glass to these guys

February 23rd, 2011
8:29 am

a big fat caipirinha toast to this crowd of georgia athletes – represent us well gentlemen!

W

February 23rd, 2011
8:49 am

Mr. Ledbetter,
Please, please do not post unverified 40 times that are faster than the fastest ever run at the combine. Or at least say where the times were recorded and how…

[...] are 30 players that will be participating from the state of [...]

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 23rd, 2011
9:19 am

Mr. W — They are verified from the school. Until they run at combine those are good times. Coaches have vouched (including Mark Richt) for the times we list here. Combine times will take their place. We’ll have combine times by Tuesday, until them we have these college times.

E

February 23rd, 2011
9:24 am

TO: Mr. W

I totally agree with you on some of the 40 yr dash times. Some of those posted have been significantly “speeded up” over their real times. The combine clocks will be more accurate.

Paddy got served

February 23rd, 2011
9:37 am

by CED. well done CED

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ajc sports editor, Georgia News, Rod Johnson, ERiC GUTHRIE™, Dj Pretty Boy Tank and others. Dj Pretty Boy Tank said: RT @AJCFalcons: PEACH STATE IN THE HOUSE: NFL scouting combine will feature 30 players from Georgia http://t.co/L423M0Q [...]

collegeballfan

February 23rd, 2011
10:43 am

Wow! If I counted correctly only 11 players went to college in Georgia.
The other 19 went to colleges out of state.

KDAWG

February 23rd, 2011
10:47 am

I did a portion of the combine at the gym yesterday; pumped out 5 reps!

BOB

February 23rd, 2011
11:17 am

You need some instruments for there to be music.

There is a form of singing called a cappella you might have heard of?

DaJoKeR

February 23rd, 2011
11:21 am

Well D Led iI have to stab back…. IFFFF you need instruments, theeeennnn, What is a chorus, or a acapella?

sam

February 23rd, 2011
11:24 am

I’d tell Rick Gosselin I was having sex with his mother at Wal Mart. Little nosy beotch. Sounds like a progressive.

Jim

February 23rd, 2011
11:40 am

Hilarious Video on Sunday Alcohol Drinking

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6TOM_UuQzc0

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 23rd, 2011
11:48 am

A capella is singing. You might not need instruments. For my music, I need instruments. Some horns, some strings, a keyboard. Something.

ron robinson

February 23rd, 2011
11:50 am

What about Ricky Dobbs (Douglas County High School)?

vrjacket

February 23rd, 2011
11:52 am

Orlando, you might edit Jerrard Tarrant’s blurb to add that he went to Carrollton High School like you did for the other players from Georgia.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 23rd, 2011
11:53 am

ron robinson — Don’t see a Ricky Dobbs on the invite list. Just DeMarcus Dobbs. Here’s the invite list: http://www.nflcombine.net/players/official-invite-list.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 23rd, 2011
11:54 am

[...] more: NFL scouting combine will feature 30 players from Georgia … This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged 280-passes, before-landing, blinn-junior, [...]

Douglascounty resident

February 23rd, 2011
12:20 pm

Ricky Dobbs is an incredible kid, was happy to have watched him grow and develop into an fine young man. Statistically he had an amazing college career, why would he not get a look in the NFL? Is it his size? The spread-offense thing?
Keep an eye on this kid even outside of football..He is not kidding about that President thing.That really is his goal.

Left Eye

February 23rd, 2011
12:27 pm

Where is buzz?

WTF

February 23rd, 2011
12:31 pm

Maybe because Dobbs got a $1MM education from the US Navy and is obligated to repay the US taxpayers with a set number of years of military service (i.e., Roger Stauback)

Steiner

February 23rd, 2011
12:32 pm

I CAN VOUCH FOR ALL THESE FAST 40 TIMES…WE TIMED THEM OFF THE SIDE OF STONE MOUNTAIN….

johnny too good

February 23rd, 2011
12:36 pm

Goodluck to Lockette of Ft. Valley and Albany native

and @paddy, whats wrong with a rap music class, when some schools offer ballroom dancing or billiards, or selective spending(how to shop)?
any course in music can be related to social majors, ex: sociology, psychology, women’s studies, or cultural sciences

http://www.youtube.com/thatsjohnanderson

UGA Student

February 23rd, 2011
12:57 pm

DOL, where do you teach ComLaw? I’m in a class at UGA right now (coughCOMESPEAKHEREcough)

Tide Roll

February 23rd, 2011
12:59 pm

Carpenter will go much higher than the third round. When you look at Carpenter, Dominguez and Maurice Hurt, along with Byron Isom at Auburn and underclassmen such as Chance Warmack at Alabama and Roke Watkins at South Carolina, it’s no wonder Uga loses so many ball games. Inexcusably poor evaluation and recruiting when it comes to in-state offensive lineman.

Greg Moundine

February 23rd, 2011
1:31 pm

First to write First….Draft smartly Falcons

jafhl

February 23rd, 2011
1:31 pm

Damn way go with the GT descriptions vs the UGA ones…. make the uga players sound like saints comparatively speaking. How many of them will also have to also explain all their misdemeanors and arrests? …didn’t even mention it.

Ojayjuel

February 23rd, 2011
1:50 pm

Paddy got his booty handed to him by CED and D. LED. HA, that’s what he gets for trying to be a smart a$$! Maybe he’ll do some reseach before opening that big trap again! LMAO!

Mocking your Mock

February 23rd, 2011
2:04 pm

So Boling is a 3rd round draft pick this week DOL? I thought he was a 1st rounder, according to you? Oh, Allen Bailey is the 62nd best prospect. Didn’t you have the Falcons drafting him in the first round? Come on man!

Mocking your Mock

February 23rd, 2011
2:06 pm

Paddy

The Housing graduates I know are making close to six figures and still in their twenties. Banking, Real Estate, Mortgage… etc.

True Fan

February 23rd, 2011
3:03 pm

D. So YOU need instruments for it to be called music? Sounds like a personal problem to me. What qualifies as an instrument? Turntables have been used as instruments. They certainly weren’t using them to play records. Ever been to a real Blues festival? Wash tub basses and string guitars made by attaching to the side of a building are considered instruments by everyone enjoying the music. Reed pipes made from reeds gathered in the yard are prevalent as well. I could go on and on about this but I think you get the idea. Vocal chords were certainly one of, if not the original instrument. Go Falcons! Bring home a DE!

F-Troop

February 23rd, 2011
4:54 pm

Yeah, Ricky Dobbs has got four years of Active Obligated Service to complete. So it’s “Anchors Aweigh!” Great kid, great QB at Navy. Want my son to emulate him.

Najeh Davenpoop

February 23rd, 2011
5:07 pm

“In rap you might not have an instrument, so sometimes you can’t really call it music. You need some instruments for there to be music.”

Huh? Do you mean real instruments vs. synthesized instruments?

robertussen

February 23rd, 2011
5:15 pm

D LED when you talk to Aj Green make sure to ask him about his famous high school coach John Mckissic and what that was like

bwidmer2

February 23rd, 2011
5:41 pm

An interesting question to ask each of the GA boys at the combine: Why did you or did you not go to either Georgia or Georgia Tech for your schooling / playing? If you didn’t, please be specific. Only after you get these answers, will we know why we can’t keep the best talent at home.

Falcons relax

February 23rd, 2011
6:42 pm

D-Led I know what you mean. But Rap music does indeed have in what you have to call “MUSIC” in using instruments. Ever heard of the Neptunes or The Roots? C’mon D-Led..lol! Great info btw

falcon21

February 23rd, 2011
7:12 pm

DOL, Thank You for your post in the Bird Cage, class act. You helped get it started and Sarah B was and always be the Queen of it.

Nick Saban

February 23rd, 2011
7:16 pm

And Richt can’t win with all that talent in state. Ha what a joke.

Tom Pridemore was tough

February 23rd, 2011
8:47 pm

D-Led is on his game tonight…..I’m scared to be a smart a$$$…

KimZ'sPackage

February 24th, 2011
9:25 am

The Dobbs kid from NAVY owes the NAVY a few years before he can play in the NFL. Like David Robinson Spent his time on a Submarine before the NBA.

FeammaAttebra

February 26th, 2011
10:02 am

Hi, i’m FeammaAttebra stylish joke, true site.