Guessing what Tech’s juniors will decide, draft-wise

It'll be a tug-of-war decision for Bay Bay. (AJC photo by Johnny Crawford)

It's a tug-of-war decision for Bay Bay. (AJC photo by Johnny Crawford)

Signing Day is big every year, but Feb. 3, 2010, won’t have nearly as much to do with the state of the Yellow Jackets next season as what happens in January. Because four  juniors have decisions to make, and what they decide will in large measure to determine if Georgia Tech is again a Top 10 team next season.

That in mind, here’s a rundown of the four, with the accompanying Bradley Best Guess — which isn’t to be confused, as we know, with a good guess — as to what they’ll choose:

Morgan Burnett, safety: Rates No. 2 to Tennessee’s Eric Berry on Mel Kiper Jr.’s ESPN.com Insiders list of junior safeties. (Link requires registration.) Doesn’t crack Scouts Inc.’s list of top 100 prospects. (Link also requires registration.) Didn’t have a very good season — nobody except Derrick Morgan among Tech defenders did — and would surely benefit from another year on campus. Bradley’s Best Guess: He stays.

Jonathan Dwyer, B-back: Rates No. 3 on Kiper’s list of junior running backs and No. 30 among Scouts Inc.’s top 100. Is slated to go 29th in Round 1 to the Chargers according to Todd McShay’s first mock draft on ESPN.com’s Insiders. (Link requires registration.) Rule of thumb: If you project as a first-round pick, you leave. Bradley’s Best Guess: He goes.

Derrick Morgan, defensive end: Rates No. 1 among junior DE’s per Kiper and is No. 8 overall on Mel’s Big Board. (Link requires registration.) Goes No. 3 to Cleveland in McShay’s first mock draft. Bradley’s Best Guess: Not even a guess — he’s gone with the wind.

Demaryius Thomas, wide receiver: The toughest call among the junior Jackets. Said after the ACC championship game he’s staying, for what that’s worth. Rates No. 4 on Kiper’s list of junior wideouts. Ranks No. 50 among Scouts Inc.’s top 50, which would put him in the middle of Round 2, which is where a lot of pro teams prefer to draft receivers. Might move up with a big senior season but there’s no guarantee he’d move into Round 1. Flip a coin, Bay Bay. Bradley’s Best Guess: Coin comes up heads; he leaves.

497 comments Add your comment

TechMAN

December 24th, 2009
12:39 am

mgh

December 24th, 2009
12:41 am

Reg_Turnt_Up

December 24th, 2009
12:41 am

bugsquacher

December 24th, 2009
12:41 am

merry christmas tech! 30-24.

cattle dawg

December 24th, 2009
12:42 am

Bay bay is gone my friend.

Mark Bradley

December 24th, 2009
12:42 am

I’m pretty impressed. A close race for First at 12:40 a.m. on Christmas Eve. Kudos to both TechMAN and mgh. And thanks for reading at this late hour.

Reg_Turnt_Up

December 24th, 2009
12:43 am

Mr. Bradley, I have Bay Bay and Morgan Burnett returning. Dwyer and Derrick Morgan gone. Both will be sorely missed, we wish them well!

Mark Bradley

December 24th, 2009
12:46 am

Bay Bay’s the tough call, Reg. I think he’ll be a fine pro no matter when he goes. But I’m guessing he’ll go now.

messin with sasquatch

December 24th, 2009
12:47 am

they would all be missed. hope bay bay stays – we haven’t seen enough of him. burnett – he should stay and help tech win another championship with an improved D. dwyer and morgan – wouldn’t blame them at all for cashin in their chips.

cattle dawg

December 24th, 2009
12:47 am

Mark it down Mark. Bay bay will leave if hes projected in 2nd rd.

macrotech

December 24th, 2009
12:49 am

These guys will ALL be missed, should they decide to leave. However, we have some pretty good guys waiting to fill their spots….. I believe that we’ll be a top ten team if they leave. I’m an optimist at heart! GO TECH!!!

CalhounDawg

December 24th, 2009
12:51 am

Here’s hoping that all 4 head to the pros. I think Cap was better than Morgan in many ways so he might not be leaving. I think the other 3 are gone though. Tech will not be a top 10 team next year with Dwyer, Morgan and Thomas leaving.

Mark Bradley

December 24th, 2009
12:52 am

I think Top 10 without Morgan, Dwyer and Bay Bay would be a stretch. Kind of like Georgia the year after Stafford and Moreno.

messin with sasquatch

December 24th, 2009
12:55 am

Dwyer surprised me with his durability – for the pounding he took, he never came up hurting.

trembling chihuahuas

December 24th, 2009
12:56 am

bugsquacher: enjoy Shreveport

Mark Bradley

December 24th, 2009
12:57 am

Dwyer is a strong, fast guy. Imagine if he had a fullback as a lead blocker.

trembling chihuahuas

December 24th, 2009
1:00 am

Dwyer has a great combination of power, agility and decent speed. I agree with sasquatch that his durability was surprising given that he took hits almost every down on the dive play.

Schlagdawg

December 24th, 2009
1:03 am

So what is your early Tech 2010 prediction Bradley? If not top 10, what?

Meanwhile...the X factor

December 24th, 2009
1:05 am

Mark is it not true the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement runs out after this draft, and there is a fear among agents that a NBA like rookie salary scale will be introduced?

huntergt13

December 24th, 2009
1:06 am

thanks for your time on the Flats, Derrick and Morgan. See you next year 21 and 8!

wiley

December 24th, 2009
1:09 am

Idk I think they could be a consistent top ten team like some of the better coached programs in the nation. PJ’s system will consistently put players in a position to take advantage of one on one match ups. If PJ can continue to get 3 star and 4 star players into this system…we will not have any serious rebuilding years beyond the occasional 8-4 or 9-3 record. I think PJ is building something special. Players will step up and inferior talent will be neutralized by the TO….look at preston lyons and sean bedford, many less talented players will shine for the jackets because of his system and coaching.

Resign or Resign

December 24th, 2009
1:37 am

Don’t think they would have a chance at Derrick Morgan, but I’d love to see Dwyer and/or Thomas in a Falcon uniform next year. I know our needs are defensive, but both of these guys are going to be stars in the NFL. BTW, I’m a Tech fan and hate to see them go; but I’m sure that Dwyer will be gone and, after the Sam Bradford saga, I think that any junior will be more apt to leave rather than stay and risk a career-ending injury during his senior year. IF Morgan IS available, the Falcons would be fools to pass on him. Who did they pick ahead of Michael Johnson last year? William Moore?, who continued his injury-prone college career into the NFL.

Go Jacket!

December 24th, 2009
1:45 am

I have been worrying ever since Paul Johnson came to Tech if he could recruit the same type of talent that Gailey brought to Tech. I’m beginning to see that the “Transformers” of Gailey’s offense to Paul Johnson’s are never going to be replaced. Tech will never see another Dwyer, Thomas, or Morgan. But Tech fans will see success without these high class players. Merry Christmas!!

Go Jacket!

December 24th, 2009
1:47 am

Dwyer in a I-Formation….. That’s one scary thought.

RomeDawg

December 24th, 2009
1:50 am

I sure hope they all leave! They will, afterall, leave as LOSERS in the biggest game of their season! Just kidding Techies, sorta! Amazing that people like Todd McShay seem to overlook the fact the Morgan looses gas in the 2nd half. I believe the other 3 have a chance to be very good pro NFL players

exNFLplayer

December 24th, 2009
2:14 am

The issue with Thomas is that he has absolutely nothing to gain by staying. He will not become a better receiver with one more year in PJ’s system. Most of his routes are canned, predetermined with the receiver making few reads. Basically go to a spot and that’s where the ball is delivered. NFL folks know he has good size, strength, good hands, and can block. Thomas might as well go out and start learning to be a real receiver while he gets paid. Coming back would in effect put him behind more polished receivers ( Julio Jones and A.J. Green possibly among them) that will be coming out in 2011. Burnett is kind of in a catch 22 in that by coming back he could risk falling farther with another sub par year. Tech’s D is not going to get much better next year and Burnett could be collateral damage. Don’t know what he will do, but if he projects 1st or early 2nd he better go. Several teams need safeties so who knows.

Dwyer and Morgan are absolute no brainers. Gone. If Dwyer has the good fortune to be drafted by the Chargers as predicted he couldn’t land in a better place. He fits that offense like a glove.

2-2

December 24th, 2009
3:34 am

I think Morgan and Dwyer go, BayBay and Burnett Stay.

dagnabit

December 24th, 2009
4:40 am

Let’s just keep all four for one more year.

Eat It St. Simons

December 24th, 2009
5:20 am

((((30-24)))) hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

hop

December 24th, 2009
5:53 am

i will be surprised if any if them stay since this could be a cap for rookies in 2011.

lanier

December 24th, 2009
5:59 am

bay bay has got to go because with this offense he wont be able to improve his numbers next year hence his draft position

Old Gator

December 24th, 2009
6:21 am

Bay Bay need to go. More money to go now than risk what could happen if he returns. If he was my son, I would tell him to take the money-1st or 2nd round- and finish his education later.

JTH

December 24th, 2009
6:28 am

If they’re smart they will go. Beats having to be humiliated by UGA again. Plus playing in the ACC doesnt do anything to improve your stock so might as well go.

30-24
UGA real ACC champs.

m

December 24th, 2009
6:30 am

Mark, your comments about Tech are always off the mark.

Example: George O’leary built up Tech’s program to be TOP 25 in the final poll for 5 years in a row. gomer Gailey inherited a program in tremendous shape and NEVER ONCE finished in the TOP 25.

Yet, Mark, you foolishly try to say that gomer kept the status quo. With you head that far up your arse, how can anything you say about Tech have any merit???

Gt4ever

December 24th, 2009
6:40 am

I like your calls, morgan, dwyer, and bay bay are gone….

T-MAN

December 24th, 2009
6:46 am

I think the only one to leave will be Morgan,Dwyer will want to finish his college experience,Burnett will stay to try to improve his draft position,Bay Bay stays for the same reason as Dwyer,just a guess but,I think this is a tight group of players and will like to finish together.

GT71

December 24th, 2009
7:04 am

Hope they stay and help rectify the slight ‘oops’ that was the GA game. But if they all go, CPJ will just fill in the blanks. Unlike most, his is a system of a pretty basic offense – very few ‘plays’ – combined with terrific coaching and the old riverboat gambler attitude. If the QB can read one player and the backs and receivers block one other single player, the ‘play’ will work. As for the defense, well, a systematic offence at least keeps them off the field. Remember, most teams have about half the number of offensive plays during a game against Tech than against anyone else. Just don’t give the ball away and RUN THE OFFENSE (even with 3 minutes to play and UGA ahead by 6!).

snapshot

December 24th, 2009
7:10 am

All mutt fans are hoping they are all gone. They are scared of of Techs football program and just wish the Yellow Jackets would go away. 7-5 toilet bowl in Lower LA. LOL

papadawg

December 24th, 2009
7:17 am

Snapshot, Scared of what, GT didn’t beat the 7-5 Dawgs this year with these guys so I hope they all stay so we can destroy them in Athens.

AndyC

December 24th, 2009
7:23 am

Merry Christmas to all Tech fans. I hope you get a lump of coal in your stockings in the form of all of these guys leaving for the NFL. I can’t wait to see Tech revert back to where they belong which is a barley .500 team. 30-24, losers once and always.

CornieBread

December 24th, 2009
7:24 am

From a very reliable source in the north Cobb area near Kell, Dwyer is a goner, FOR SURE!! MAybe some of Johnson’s red shirt freshmen will be real quality players.

driving by on interstate 20 in Louisiana

December 24th, 2009
7:34 am

Wow! A high school stadium for a bowl game! Sooooo close to the interstate, I bet you can smell the exhaust!

papadawg

December 24th, 2009
7:37 am

It’s a good thing the Pitiful ACC has a tie in to the Orange Bowl or GT could be on the Blue Field Again

John

December 24th, 2009
7:37 am

Well…daily bashing of Georgia Tech by ignorant, trailer-trash UGAg fans…….CHECK

AMG

December 24th, 2009
7:41 am

Bay bay , Dwyer and Burnett stay to win a national championship. Look for Dave womack to move over to special teams and a new defensive coordinator to come in.

Ar

December 24th, 2009
7:42 am

GT equals “little man syndrome”

Brian Jones TECH FAN

December 24th, 2009
7:43 am

Doesnt matter all three are awesome players techs o will still roll with nesbitt at the helm . And yall wrtie down one name and put on your fridge so you can come back and say damn Brian Jones you were right DRUMMOND white boy will win a heisman

idiot UGA fans

December 24th, 2009
7:54 am

Hey idiot UGA fans…this is a GT blog…don’t you have some last minute Christmas shopping to do for overalls or propane?

papadawg

December 24th, 2009
7:55 am

John, is that the best you can come up with. Cmon folks let’s come up with some original comments.

idiot UGA fans

December 24th, 2009
7:55 am

I hope all 4 stay…It will not matter…GT mauls UGA in Athens next year…mark it down.