Ex-Georgia guard Justin Shaffer: ‘It’d mean a lot’ to play for Falcons

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Georgia's Justin Shaffer reacts after the Bulldogs defeated Alabama in the 2022 CFP National Championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium. (Emilee Chinn/TNS)

Credit: TNS

INDIANAPOLIS — Former Georgia Bulldogs guard Justin Shaffer, a Cedar Grove High School graduate, wouldn’t mind staying close to home to play in the NFL.

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During his NFL scouting combine interview Thursday, Shaffer said he’s spoken with the Falcons, Cowboys, Raiders and Cardinals, among others. His meetings with the Falcons went well, he said, and “It’d mean a lot” to join his hometown franchise, especially because his family wouldn’t have to travel far to see him play.

Shaffer makes sense for the Falcons, who need interior line reinforcements. He was a bit overshadowed at times on a loaded Georgia roster, but Shaffer, a fifth-year senior, was All-SEC second team and helped enable a top-tier rushing attack throughout his career.

His final season was his best. The 6-foot-4, 330-pound Shaffer started at left guard in each of Georgia’s 15 games last season, logging 88% of snaps. His final game was the national-championship victory over Alabama in Indianapolis. He participated in the Senior Bowl last month.

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Shaffer expects to participate in all testing at the combine except the bench press, which he plans to do at Georgia’s Pro Day. He currently projects as a mid-round pick in a crowded offensive line class.

“(A team drafting me will get) a dog, somebody who loves the game and will come in and do whatever it takes to get on the field Day 1,” Shaffer said.

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