VALDOSTA -- Dusty Bonner is a great on-the-field leader.

Dusty Bonner is the product of the offense he ran at Kentucky and Valdosta State.

Dusty Bonner isn't afraid to take a hit.

Dusty Bonner doesn't have the arm strength for the next level.

The two-time Harlon Hill Trophy winner has heard those conflicting opinions and many more when it comes to his chances in this weekend's NFL draft. But anyone looking to the former Blazer quarterback for clues on his future is going to be disappointed.

Bonner is pretty much in the dark himself.

"I really don't have a clue," he said. "I'm just hoping for something to work out."

Depending on which publication or website one reads, Bonner could be taken as early as the fifth round or go undrafted. The scouts with the stopwatches and charts did not give the former Valdosta High product any clues in his individual workouts or at the Hula Bowl all-star game in January.

"They really don't let you know how you did," Bonner said. "They come out to watch you and then just say 'Thanks' and leave. It's really just 'hey' and 'bye.'"

How does Bonner feel about talk that he is too slow or can't complete deep passes?

"It's not one of those things that they say in my face," he replied. "I've heard through my agents that those are the things they ask about. And the offense that I ran is one of the things that they question.

"But the main thing is to get a shot somewhere. Then you can answer the questions that people have. I understand right now that they're asking questions about everybody; how tall they are, how fast they are, things like that. But you've still got to play football. You've still got to go prove yourself."

Even if Bonner is not drafted on Saturday or Sunday, most observers expect him to be invited to a camp as a free agent. But if the NFL doesn't pan out this year, would he consider playing in Canada or an Arena league?

"I don't know," he said. "I'll cross that bridge when I get there."



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