Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets' highest NFL draft picks since 1970

Written by:
February 24, 2022
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Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets' highest NFL draft picks since 1970

While most colleges and universities field a football team as part of its general athletics program, there are some for which football is more than merely a sport—it’s akin almost to a religion. Devotion to the team and its colors is as important to that school’s culture as a religious icon is to a believer. These programs actively scout and recruit notable high school players, and are in turn rigorously applied to by matriculating seniors eager to make a name for themselves at the collegiate level.

Among the most notable college football empires are Notre Dame, the universities of Alabama, Michigan, Texas, Nebraska, and Oklahoma, Penn State, Ohio State—the list goes on and on.

But for every touchstone football school, there is an outlier that has produced some of the most successful and cherished players in the game. Think Jackson State, which gave us “Sweetness” himself, Hall of Fame running back Walter Payton. Or Mississippi Valley State, which yielded 3-time Super Bowl champion and #1 Player in NFL History, as voted by the NFL Network, ‘49ers wide receiver Jerry Rice.

Each year, the college draft serves as a source of renewal to professional football and a testament to the quality of college programs nationwide. With the 2022 NFL draft set to take place April 28-30 in Las Vegas, Stacker compiled a list of the highest NFL draft picks from the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets using data from Pro Football Reference. Ties were broken by the most recent year drafted.

#20. Michael Johnson (DE)
- Draft pick: Round 3, #70 overall in 2009
- Drafted by: Cincinnati Bengals
- Years as a starter in NFL: 8 (0 Pro Bowls)

#19. Dez White (WR)
- Draft pick: Round 3, #69 overall in 2000
- Drafted by: Chicago Bears
- Years as a starter in NFL: 4 (0 Pro Bowls)

#18. Reggie Wilkes (LB)
- Draft pick: Round 3, #66 overall in 1978
- Drafted by: Philadelphia Eagles
- Years as a starter in NFL: 7 (0 Pro Bowls)

#17. Adam Gotsis (DT)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #63 overall in 2016
- Drafted by: Denver Broncos
- Years as a starter in NFL: 3 (0 Pro Bowls)

#16. Pat Swilling (LB)
- Draft pick: Round 3, #60 overall in 1986
- Drafted by: New Orleans Saints
- Years as a starter in NFL: 9 (5 Pro Bowls)

#15. Michael Cheever (C)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #60 overall in 1996
- Drafted by: Jacksonville Jaguars
- Years as a starter in NFL: 0

#14. Steve Raible (WR)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #59 overall in 1976
- Drafted by: Seattle Seahawks
- Years as a starter in NFL: 0

#13. Travares Tillman (DB)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #58 overall in 2000
- Drafted by: Buffalo Bills
- Years as a starter in NFL: 1 (0 Pro Bowls)

#12. Jeremiah Attaochu (LB)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #50 overall in 2014
- Drafted by: San Diego Chargers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 1 (0 Pro Bowls)

#11. Stephen Hill (WR)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #43 overall in 2012
- Drafted by: NY Jets
- Years as a starter in NFL: 2 (0 Pro Bowls)

#10. Daryl Smith (LB)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #39 overall in 2004
- Drafted by: Jacksonville Jaguars
- Years as a starter in NFL: 12 (0 Pro Bowls)

#9. Coleman Rudolph (DE)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #36 overall in 1993
- Drafted by: NY Jets
- Years as a starter in NFL: 0

#8. Dave Lutz (T)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #34 overall in 1983
- Drafted by: Kansas City Chiefs
- Years as a starter in NFL: 11 (0 Pro Bowls)

#7. Kent Hill (G)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #26 overall in 1979
- Drafted by: Los Angeles Rams
- Years as a starter in NFL: 8 (5 Pro Bowls)

#6. Demaryius Thomas (WR)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #22 overall in 2010
- Drafted by: Denver Broncos
- Years as a starter in NFL: 8 (4 Pro Bowls)

#5. Derrick Morgan (DE)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #16 overall in 2010
- Drafted by: Tennessee Titans
- Years as a starter in NFL: 8 (0 Pro Bowls)

#4. Eddie Lee Ivery (RB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #15 overall in 1979
- Drafted by: Green Bay Packers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 4 (0 Pro Bowls)

#3. Keith Brooking (LB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #12 overall in 1998
- Drafted by: Atlanta Falcons
- Years as a starter in NFL: 12 (5 Pro Bowls)

#2. Marco Coleman (DE)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #12 overall in 1992
- Drafted by: Miami Dolphins
- Years as a starter in NFL: 12 (1 Pro Bowls)

#1. Calvin Johnson (WR)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #2 overall in 2007
- Drafted by: Detroit Lions
- Years as a starter in NFL: 9 (6 Pro Bowls)

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