April 28, 2013
On top of the 8 players drafted on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Georgia had at least six guys sign free agent contracts. These are unconfirmed, based on best available information.
Branden Smith - Tampa
Kwame Geathers - San Diego
Abry Jones - Jacksonville
Christian Robinson - St. Louis
Mike Gilliard - St. Louis
Marlon Brown - Houston
I can't think Kwame ever dreamed he'd be in this group. You only leave as a junior for a few reasons. While anyone at a program like Georgia thinks they have a shot at the NFL, leaving with eligibility left still has to be a pretty sure thing. He was a virtual lock to start 13+ games in 2013. San Diego's D needed some help, no doubt, but the Chargers will have virtually nothing invested in him, so he'll have to really work to earn it. He has the ability to do so, but not getting drafted has to be a surprise. It was to me.
I think Branden's situation is purely a character concern by teams. He's got the talent to make the Tampa roster. As long as he stays out of trouble, I don't see him getting cut. Tampa just signed a FA from Washington on one side, but still, Tampa was the worst defensive passing team in the league last year. Branden can help. Marlon's going to have to prove he's over the ACL tear to have a shot. His physicality gives him the chance to make a team. Abry is a bit of a mystery. He looked like he had all conference or better potential moving forward after his 2011 campaign. 2012, before the ankle injury, he didn't look as quick or powerful. If he gets back to 2011 form, he'll make the team in Jacksonville, who could use the help.
Then there is Robinson and Gilliard. I love both of these guys.