On the last day for underclassmen to declare for the 2018 NFL Draft, UGA’s star linebacker Roquan Smith has officially announced that he will take his talents to the professional level, which was a decision that comes as no surprise.
Smith, who was awarded the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker, along with finishing 10th in Heisman Trophy voting, was a major key to the Bulldogs’ success in 2017. He was the leader of an elite Georgia defensive unit, finishing with 137 tackles (including 14 TFL), 6.5 sacks, and one forced fumble. Even when Smith wasn’t making tackles or sacking the quarterback, he made an impact on almost every defensive play for the Dawgs.
In a statement released by UGA, Smith said, “As you know this is somewhat of a crossroads for me. I’ve had discussions with coaches and family and a lot of thought and prayer. The decision to leave is not easy but I know it is the right one. Georgia will always be my school and my home and I sincerely wish all the best to the coaches, staff, and players as they continue to reach higher goals in the years to come.”
His announcement Monday comes after he was reportedly very torn about the decision, despite the fact that he is projected to be drafted very early this April when the NFL draft rolls around.