Georgia vs. Georgia Tech: Power Ranking the 5 Best NFL Draft-Eligible Players
The Georgia Bulldogs have dominated the series against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, but both teams have talented players, and they will be on display on Saturday.
Normally, the Bulldogs send more players to the NFL than the Yellow Jackets, and this year it will more than likely be the same scenario.
The best player who is draft eligible between the two teams is Aaron Murray, but he will miss the remainder of the season due to a torn ACL. But that won’t keep the NFL scouts away, because both teams have produced major NFL players over the years, such as Calvin Johnson, Demaryius Thomas, A.J. Green, Justin Houston and Geno Atkins
Here’s a power ranking of the five best NFL draft-eligible players.
5. Georgia Tech CB Jemea Thomas
The Tech defense has not had a stellar season, but Jemea Thomas has been one of the top defensive backs in the ACC the past two years.
Thomas only has one interception, but he leads the team in tackles with 64. He has also notched two sacks and has forced two fumbles.
Standing at 5’9’’ and 195 pounds, Thomas is on the small side to be a starting free safety in the NFL. But because he can make all of the tackles and can make plays in the air (four interceptions in 2012), there will be a place for him at the next level. Don’t be surprised if Thomas is playing cornerback instead of safety on Sundays.
4. Georgia DE Garrison Smith
Garrison Smith has been one of the more consistent defensive linemen for the Bulldogs the past two seasons.
Smith is coming off of his best performance as a Bulldog, as he tallied 9.5 tackles in two sacks in the win against Kentucky.
Whether it’s lining up as a nose tackle or a defensive end in a 3-4 scheme, Smith finds a way to make an impact.
He will be a defensive tackle at the next level. And if he continues to work like he has at Georgia, he will be another Georgia defensive lineman who will see success in the NFL.
3. Georgia TE Arthur Lynch
One of Murray’s favorite targets to go to over the past two seasons has been Arthur Lynch, and he has all of the tools to be a solid tight end in the NFL.
Lynch is considered as one of the 10 best tight end prospects in college football. He stands at 6’5’’ and plays a lot bigger than that.
While he is not the playmaking tight end the Bulldogs have had in the past, he is very solid in blocking and rarely drops passes. He would be a steal if he goes past the fourth round.
2. Georgia OG Chris Burnette
The offensive line has been somewhat criticized for their play this season, but the one constant offensive lineman has been Chris Burnette.
The three-year starter was a second-team All-SEC player last year and was named Offensive Lineman of the Week for his play against Tennessee in Week 6.
Burnette is one of the five best guard prospects and has the size and strength to dominate NFL defensive tackles. Having a strong performance in the last two games will really help his draft stock.
1. Georgia Tech DE Jeremiah Attaochu
Out of all of the draft-eligible players who will be on the field on Saturday, Jeremiah Attaochu has the best chance to be a multi-Pro Bowl player.
Attaochu played outside linebacker last year and had double-digit sacks. This year, he moved to defensive end and has eight sacks through 11 games.
Because of his ability to shed blocks and chase down skill players, Attaochu could make his way near the top of many teams' draft boards by January. If he has a dominating performance against the Bulldogs, that will help him in a big way when it comes to elevating his draft status.