Heavy hitter: Adam Gotsis tackles North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams. Photo: Getty Images
Australia’s top NFL Draft prospect has suffered a devastating injury with just a couple of months to go in his college career.
Adam Gotsis, a defensive tackle for the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, will be sidelined for the remainder of the season with a knee injury and will not be able to perform for scouts again between now and the 2016 NFL Draft in April of next year.
The Victorian was a three-year starter for the Atlanta School and was named in the second all-conference team for the ACC in 2014.
Fan favourite: Gotsis was plucked from obscurity and became a very important player for the Yellow Jackets. Photo: Getty Images
At 198cm and 129kg, the hulking Aussie caught the eye of many fans and was named a captain in 2015, his senior year.
Interest in the NFL has never been higher in Australia thanks to the presence of Jarryd Hayne, and many educated Aussie American football fans are confident in Gotsis’ ability to fly the flag for Australia long-term.
Just want to thank all the family, friends and fans for the messages! I appreciate all the love and support!
— Adam Gotsis (@gotsis96)
November 5, 2015
Scouting website NFLDraftScout.com rated Gotsis as the tenth best prospect at his position, and a third round pick overall.
It remains to be seen what his injury and the performances of those around him will do to his stock in the next few months.
His coach Paul Johnson told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the Aussie was: “Really was playing at a high level” and described him as “the leader of the defense.”
When asked of Gotsis’ draft hopes, Johnson was confident that he’d “get his chance”, but that “it’s just going to be a little later than it probably would have been.”
Gotsis is hoping to become the fourth Australian drafted in the NFL after Colin Scotts in 1987 with the Cardinals, Jesse Williams in 2013 with the Seahawks and David Yankey in 2014 with the Vikings – Williams’ career has been sidelined by injury and illness, but he was still awarded a Super Bowl ring when Seattle won Super Bowl 48.
He suffered the knock last weekend in Tech’s 27-21 loss to the Virginia Cavaliers. So far this season he had racked up 31 tackles and three quarterback sacks.