By Doug Gorman
By the time the 2008 NFL Draft concludes on Sunday, several football players with ties to the Southern Crescent could be on their way to NFL careers.
Although none of the local football players are expected to become instant millionaires by receiving guaranteed first-round contracts, as many as four players with Clayton County roots could hear their names called out this weekend.
Among those expected to be selected this weekend are Lovejoy graduate and Georgia Tech running back Tashard Choice, Louisville wide receiver Harry Douglas, who starred as a football and basketball player at Jonesboro.
Former Jonesboro teammates, Darrell Robertson, and Jamal Lewis, who played on the defensive side at Georgia Tech, could also be headed to the NFL.
Douglas spent four years hauling in passes from Louisville teammate Brian Brohm, who is expected to be one of the first quarterbacks taken in this year's draft.
The former all-state football and basketball player led the Big East and was third nationally in receiving yards with 115-yards per game as a senior.
Douglas hauled in 71 catches and seven TDs in 10 games for the Cardinals this season.
Choice began his career playing at Oklahoma before transferring to Georgia Tech to be closer to home.
The former Lovejoy graduate spent his final three seasons carrying the football for the Yellow Jackets.
He showed his toughness after going down with an injury midway through the season against Army, but missed just the Virginia Tech game, rushed for three 100-yard games in his final four contests and was named first team All-ACC.
He leaves Tech fourth on its all-time rushing list with 3, 465 yards. He finished with 28 career TDs, which is third on the school's all-time list.
Choice is expected to go somewhere around the third round.
Choice's college teammate, Darrell Robertson originally committed to Florida State before signing with the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.
It turned out to be a good fit for the Yellow Jackets and Robertson.
The defensive end helped anchor Georgia Tech's defensive. Robertson finished his senior year with 33 tackles, including 22 solos.
He turned two fumble recoveries into TDs during his four-year career. Jamal Lewis, who was a high school football and basketball teammate of both Robertson and Douglas at Jonesboro High School and started 27 career games. Lewis had four career interceptions.