Georgia defensive tackle Trenton Thompson announced he will enter the 2018 NFL draft.
Thompson, a junior, came to Georgia as one of the top prospects in the nation in 2015. In three seasons, Thompson has been one of Georgia’s top contributors on defense. This past season, Thompson totaled 38 tackles as part of a deep rotation on the defensive line.
"After long discussion with his my family and coaches I have decided to enter the 2018 NFL Draft," Thompson wrote on his personal Instagram page. "I would like to thank my family, teammates, Coach (Kirby) Smart and the rest of the staff for all of their support the last 3 years."
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Telegraph
Statistically, Thompson's best season came in 2016, when he tallied 64 tackles and five sacks. He had a huge Liberty Bowl game that saw him record three sacks and earn MVP honors.
One of his better games of the 2017 season came in the national championship loss against Alabama. Thompson recorded three tackles, with half of a tackle going for a loss.
In early December, Thompson initially hinted that he might be returning to Georgia with an Instagram post captioned, "Looking ahead! #UGA19 #SeniorSoon." However, after Georgia's 54-48 double overtime win over Oklahoma, Thompson said his decision wasn't final and that his family would play a role in it.
"I love Georgia so everything will come down to my mom," Thompson said.
Thompson is the first underclassman at Georgia to announce he is declaring for the NFL draft. Thompson's announcement came the same day quarterback Jacob Eason made it official that he will transfer for the program.
Prior to Thompson's departure, the Georgia defensive line was only set to lose nose tackle John Atkins, who exhausted his college football eligibility, from the unit. Now that Thompson has announced his intention to turn pro, Georgia has 21 open scholarships for the 2018 season.
In his Instagram post, Thompson thanked the Georgia fan base for its support during his time with the football team.
"Coming to Athens was the best decision of my life and the memories and friendships I’ve made will last a lifetime," Thompson wrote. "Playing in the NFL has been a lifelong dream of mine and I’m excited to see what the future holds. Even though I’m moving on to the next chapter, Georgia will always be home! I certainly want to thank the greatest fans in the country for their passion and support!"