Bullard poised to make Milledgeville NFL Draft history tonight


All the early-morning workouts. All the practices.

Tonight is the night when it pays off monetarily for Javon Bullard, at least according to the NFL draft nerds. Bullard, Baldwin High Class of 2021, is projected to be drafted in the second half of the second round or the first half of the third round, according to a composite of mock drafts.

Round 1 of the draft was held last night, when two Georgia Bulldogs were selected, including Amarius Mims from nearby Cochran, and tonight is rounds No. 2 and Round No. 3. 

Coverage begins at 7 p.m. on both ABC and ESPN.

Bullard is hoping to become the sixth Milledgeville man ever drafted by the NFL and the first in 13 years. No one from Milledgeville has ever had a more celebrated college career. Bullard twice made history in last year's CFP National Championship. His second interception of the first half against TCU set the all-time record for most interceptions in a national championship game. That record may be tied one day, but likely never broken. Then, Bullard was on the stage following the game, accepting the Defensive Most Valuable Player trophy from ESPN. The award came on the heels of Bullard being named the Defensive Most Valuable Player of the semi-final victory over Ohio State. To be named the Defensive MVP of both a College Football Playoff semifinal and championship game is a record that may be tied one day, but never broken...

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For a quick NFL Draft/Baldwin County history lesson, Earnest Byner was the first. Byner was drafted in round No. 10 of the 1984 draft, back before the draft was shortened to seven rounds. Sulecio Sanford, a BHS and Middle Tennessee State product, was taken in the seventh round of the 1999 Draft. John Milledge Academy's J.T. Wall was selected in the seventh round of the 2003 NFL draft. Clemson linebacker Leroy Hill went in round No. 3 in 2005, while BHS and Florida Gator product Maurice Hurt was selected in the seventh round of the 2011 draft.

Hill was drafted with the 98th pick, while Bullard is projected to be drafted somewhere around No. 60. If the draft nerds are correct, Bullard will become the highest-ever draft pick from Baldwin County. 


IN VIDEO: Bullard's history-making playoff run revisited

Bullard scores "sweet" NIL deal

Bullard's big game for the Dawgs in video

Baldwin's Bullard makes PFF's All-SEC first team, honorable mention All-American

It was a day that Bullard and Dawg Nation will never forget

It's a family thing for the Bullards

Bullard, Dawg teammates get their championship rings

Mayor proclaims "Javon Bullard Day" in the city of Milledgeville

In terms of local products who've appeared in NFL regular season games, there are five. Byner had the most prolific pro career, racking up more than 13,000 total yards in his 13-year career, while also winning a Super Bowl ring and making a Pro Bowl. Sanford appeared in several games for the Chicago Bears in 2000. Hill was a starting linebacker for the Seattle Seahawks for four years and appeared in a Super Bowl. Nick Harper was an undrafted free agent out of Fort Valley State who actually began his career in the Canadian Football League before catching on with the Indianapolis Colts. Harper went on to have a very successful nine-year career, winning a Super Bowl ring with the Colts in 2005 and starting at cornerback. Hurt, meanwhile, started several games on the offensive line for the Washington Redskins during his three-year stint in the league between 2011–2013.

Although it will be a night of celebration for the Bullard family, there will be some anxiety tossed in. The difference between being drafted in the middle of the second round and the middle of the third round is about $2 million in total contract money, including a half-million in signing bonus money. Then, there's location. Families always want their children to live as close to home as possible, especially momma.

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