Georgia Tech will undergo quite the makeover this offseason.
The Yellow Jackets on Monday learned that next season they will be without another three members off this year’s ACC championship team.
During a 1 p.m. news conference, juniors Jonathan Dwyer, Derrick Morgan and Morgan Burnett informed members of the media that they will leave Georgia Tech in the coming days with hopes of being selected high in April’s NFL draft.
“I really feel like this is the best decision for me and my family,” Morgan said.
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The decision was equally difficult for Burnett, as well, but he said it was the best one to make.
“I thank God for placing this opportunity in front of me, but with thoughtful prayer, I have decided to enroll in the NFL draft,” Burnett said. “I’m going to miss running out of the tunnel.”
The news of their departures comes on the heels of a Friday news conference by fellow junior and West Laurens product Demaryius Thomas, who said he was forgoing his senior season to become a professional wide receiver next fall.
Thomas said he was informed by league insiders that he likely would be selected in the second round, while Dwyer and Morgan were told they had chances to be first round selections.
After 14 games this season, Dwyer — the Yellow Jackets’ hard-running B-back — tied his rushing total from a year ago with 1,395 yards rushing. He also added 14 touchdowns. In 2008, he was declared the ACC’s player of the year.
At defensive end, Morgan finished the year with 55 tackles and 12.5 sacks. Lauded for his relentless pursuit of quarterbacks, the Coatesville, Pa., native drew several double- and occasional triple-teams from offensive lines this season.
While Dwyer’s and Morgan’s numbers were staggering and might at first-glance merit NFL attention, Burnett’s numbers fell slightly off the projections that most fans and pundits had for him when the season began. Notching four interceptions, he registered three fewer pickoffs than he had the year prior.
The last week has been a busy one at Georgia Tech. In addition to Thomas’ news, Yellow Jackets defensive coordinator Dave Wommack was fired last week, just days after the team’s 24-14 Orange Bowl loss in Miami to Iowa.
An announcement on his replacement could come in the coming days, with rumors circulating that former Virginia head coach Al Groh is the leading candidate for the position.
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