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Trenton Thompson on leaving UGA and more

INDIANAPOLIS –When speaking to the press at the NFL Combine on Friday afternoon, Georgia defensive lineman Trenton Thompson explained why he decided to leave Georgia early instead of sticking around for his senior season.

His mother said he could

“My mom played a big part of the process,” Thompson said. “She gave me the okay, so I went with her guidance…. I played a lot of football. Three seasons at UGA, in one of the toughest conferences, the SEC, and I want to support my family. This has been my lifelong dream, ever since peewee ball…when I was 12 years old.”

Thompson also felt that Georgia’s postseason games helped make the case for his early departure. Playing well in the SEC Championship game, the Rose Bowl and the National Title game demonstrated his abilities. Those contests “prepared me for where I am at right now” Thompson said.

Bowl games were a theme for Thompson as it was another postseason game that the 6-foot-4 defender called the favorite contest of his career at Georgia.

“The game against TCU, the Taxslayer Bowl, I think I had an awesome game,” Thompson said. “I had three sacks, eight tackles, four for loss. The team had my back and we wanted to win because we didn’t have that good of a season.”

The Bulldogs were also able to avenge the one game Thompson said he would like to replay, the 40-16 loss against Auburn. The Dawgs defeated Auburn in a rematch because “we did what we had to do to win” per Thompson.

Speaking of Auburn, when asked which player was the most challenging he faced in his career, Thompson eschewed many of the talented offensive linemen he fought and instead named Tigers running back Kerryon Johnson.

“He has multiple moves and can hit the hole,” Thompson said. “He ain’t tough to bring down, I just like running backs. I went against Sony [Michel] and Nick [Chubb] every day, plus [DeAndre] Swift, Brian Herrien and [Elijah] Holyfield. That’s five top backs at UGA.”

NFL teams needing to reach the postseason are meeting with the 288-pound defensive tackle. Thompson listed informal meetings with the “Jets, Titans, Browns, Raiders, Chargers, Steelers, Colts, and a lot more.” He also spoke to the New England Patriots.

Thompson plan to hold off on doing the bench press drill until Georgia’s Pro Day on March 21. He has had a shirt made for the occasion.

“I’m going to promote it on Pro Day,” Thompson said. “I have a shirt customized. It say ‘Jolly 18’ and 'Jolly Jolly' on the back.”