Monday, December 18, 2017
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Former Lakewood, Plant stars picked on Day 3 of NFL draft

Two players with local ties were selected Saturday, the final day of the draft.

New Mexico State cornerback Jonte Green, a former Lakewood High star, was selected in the sixth round (196th overall) by the Lions.

The Bengals took Plant High standout and Georgia tight end Orson Charles in the fourth round. Charles was a consensus All-SEC in 2011 and projected early as a first or second-day pick, but a drunk driving charge last month might have contributed to his slide to Day 3.

Green was the only player from Pinellas County taken.

"I was waiting a while for a few teams to call," Green said. "I had an idea I was going to be picked around that time. To hear my name called was such a relief."

Last season Green had two interceptions and broke up 14 passes. On Saturday, he watched the draft at his mother's house in St. Petersburg with family and friends. "It was great to be in town and be around everyone," he said. "I just feel blessed."

Green was the third corner Detroit took, joining Louisiana-Lafayette's Dwight "Bill" Bentley in the third round and Albion's Chris Greenwood in the fifth.

DAY IN THE STATE: Florida colleges had 11 players taken Saturday after having no picks in the first round and four on Friday, all in the third round.

Linebacker Nigel Bradham was the first Florida State player taken, going in the fourth round, 105th overall, to the Bills. FSU hadn't gone that long without having a player selected since 1987, when the Jets took Gerald Nichols 187th overall.

Florida also waited much longer than usual. Defensive tackle Jaye Howard went to Seattle (Round 4, 114th). That was the longest Florida went without a pick since 1993, when Lawrence Hatch went 142nd overall to New England. In the fifth round, former Gator and Lakeland High running back/receiver Chris Rainey went to the Steelers.

Miami led the state with six picks, the most notable Saturday being running back Lamar Miller (fourth round, Dolphins)

For the first time in six years, no USF players were taken, but six Bulls agreed to deals as undrafted free agents.

Center Chaz Hine and cornerback Quenton Washington signed with the Bucs and will report for rookie minicamp starting Friday. Joining them in NFL camps will be running back Darrell Scott (Cowboys), guard Jeremiah Warren (Patriots), safety Jerrell Young (Jaguars) and receiver A.J. Love (Vikings).

"It's pretty awesome," said Hine, who played at Newsome High, then at USF and now can continue in the same county.

Former Boca Ciega and Louisville receiver Josh Bellamy said he signed with the Chiefs.

DRAFT DEALS: There were 27 trades over the three days of the draft. The Patriots, Vikings and 49ers made four trades each; only the Chiefs, Giants, Saints and Cardinals sat out.

AROUND THE LEAGUE: Vikings running back Caleb King, 24, was arrested on suspicion of assault, the Anoka (Minn.) County Sheriff's Office said. Authorities say King assaulted a 22-year-old man, causing skull and facial fractures and cuts. The man is hospitalized in serious condition.

Staff writers Bob Putnam and Greg Auman contributed to this report.

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