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Georgia safety Jones headed to the NFL
Georgia safety Reshad Jones (9) makes an interception off a tipped ball in front of Vanderbilt wide receiver Sean Walker on Oct. 18, 2008. Jones declared for the NFL Draft on Tuesday. - photo by McClatchy Newspapers

ATHENS -- University of Georgia redshirt junior safety Reshad Jones announced Tuesday plans to forego his final collegiate season and enter the NFL draft.

A 6-foot-2, 215-pound native of Atlanta, Jones has appeared in 39 games for the Bulldogs including 27 starts. He started all 13 games this past season and ranked second on the team with 73 tackles, including a team-leading four interceptions. In Georgia's 44-20 Independence Bowl victory over Texas A&M, Jones registered five tackles and had a 59-yard interception return. Some of Jones' other highlights this past year included seven tackles and an interception in the win over No. 7 Georgia Tech and a season-high 10 tackles against No. 4 LSU.
"I talked and prayed with my family--my grandparents--and got the information back from the (NFL) advisory board," said Jones. "Considering all the factors, I thought the best decision was to enter the draft this year. I think I've matured and grown during my time at Georgia and in addition to being physically ready, I believe I am mentally ready to take this step.  I'm grateful to all the coaches for their guidance over the last four years and to my teammates."

"We've certainly enjoyed having Reshad and appreciate all he's done for the Bulldogs during his career," said coach Mark Richt. "He's played hard every time out and did an outstanding job in our secondary.  I'm hopeful this decision works out in his best interest and we wish him nothing but the very best."

Jones arrived at Georgia in 2006 from Booker T. Washington High and was redshirted. He appeared in 13 games with two starts in 2007, tallying 57 tackles as the Bulldogs went 11-2 and won the Sugar Bowl over No. 10 Hawaii. As a sophomore in 2008, he earned All-SEC second team honors after starting 12 games with 76 tackles and a team-best five interceptions. He recorded a career-high 12 tackles at No. 11 LSU in 2008 and made four tackles and had an interception in the Capital One Bowl victory over No. 19 Michigan State as the Bulldog finished 10-3.

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