Georgia DT Carter heavier, struggles at pro day

ATHENS, Ga. — Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter was nine pounds heavier than he was at the NFL combine about two weeks ago and couldn’t finish his position drills at Georgia’s pro day on Wednesday.

Carter, who was once considered a potential No. 1 pick in April’s draft, weighed 323 pounds at the pro day. He opted to do only position drills and didn’t participate in other aspects of the workout, including the 40-yard dash, cone drills and other physical tests. Carter didn’t finish the position drills because he was cramping up and breathing heavily.

Carter worked out in front of scouts and coaches from all 32 NFL teams in Georgia’s indoor facility. Three head coaches — the Falcons’ Arthur Smith, Bears’ Matt Eberflus and Steelers’ Mike Tomlin — were in attendance.

Carter, 6-foot-3, also didn’t work out in front of scouts at the NFL combine in Indianapolis on March 2. He was only measured and had interviews with NFL teams.

Carter didn’t speak to reporters in Athens on Wednesday after missing his media session at the combine.

Carter’s draft stock has dropped after he was arrested for his alleged role in a Jan. 15 car wreck in Athens that killed Georgia offensive lineman Devin Willock and recruiting staffer Chandler LeCroy.

Police allege that LeCroy was racing Carter’s car when the SUV she was driving left the road and struck two power poles and several trees. Police said LeCroy’s SUV was going 104 mph. According to police, she had a blood alcohol concentration of .197, about 2½ times the legal limit in Georgia.

Carter had to leave the combine on March 1 to return to Georgia, where he was arrested on misdemeanor charges of racing and reckless driving. Carter was briefly jailed before posting bond and returning to the combine. The misdemeanor charges carry a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The sentences are typically served through probation.

Carter’s attorney, Kim Stephens, told ESPN on Tuesday that Carter will be required to appear in Athens-Clarke Municipal Court on April 18, nine days before the start of the NFL draft.

Georgia coach Kirby Smart spent time speaking to Tomlin, Smith and others on Wednesday.

“I can speak to the competitive character of the young man,” Smart told ESPN. “I got to see it every day in practice and every day in games. It shows tremendous committed character to have two injuries that you could have quit playing [but came back]. He could have sat out the rest of the year.

“He wanted to come back. He wanted to win football games. One of the greatest traits Jalen has is his teammates, his brothers. He endears himself to his teammates and wanted to come back for those guys.”

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