Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones was slotted to go anywhere from No. 13 to 17 in CBSSports.com’s final mock drafts and that’s exactly where he ended up in the first round of Thursday’s NFL Draft with the Steelers taking him 17th overall.
Jones becomes the first Georgia linebacker ever to be drafted in the first round. Previously, the highest selected UGA linebacker was Boss Bailey, who was taken by the Lions with the second pick of the second round in 2003.
The Steelers are getting a versatile player who’s seen almost every type of offense imaginable. Jones started his college career in the high-flying Pac-12 at Southern California before transferring to Georgia and the SEC.
After redshirting in 2010, Jones finally got on the field for Georgia in 2011 and started in every game he played in after that. The 6-3 linebacker was named an All-American in 2011 and 2012, along with being named a Butkus Award finalist in both years.
Jones came up big in big games. The two biggest games of his career both came against Florida. In 2011, Jones tallied a career-high four sacks in a 24-20 Bulldog win over the Gators. Jones followed up his 2011 performance last season with a career-high 13 tackles and three sacks in Georgia’s 17-9 October win over then-No. 3 Florida.
In his predraft analysis, NFLDraftScout.com’s Rob Rang called Jones an “elite playmaker off the edge” who is “athletic enough to drop back into coverage.” Elite playmakers are something the Steelers could certainly use, especially at linebacker now that James Harrison is out of the picture.
Jones is the first Bulldog to be selected in the first round since A.J. Green went fourth overall to the Bengals in 2011.
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