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Character counts in first round as several NFL draft prospects plummet

Character counts in first round as several NFL draft prospects plummet
FILE - In a Sept. 6, 2014, file photo then-Nebraska defensive end Randy Gregory wears street clothes before an NCAA college football game against McNeese State in Lincoln, Neb. Randy Gregory says he's tested positive for marijuana at the NFL scouting combine last month and that he failed two drug tests at Nebraska last year. Gregory disclosed his marijuana use in an interview with NFL Media on March 25, 2015. Gregory went into February's scouting combine projected to be among the top 10 picks but he was not taken on the first night of the draft. (Nati Harnik / Associated Press)

Timber. That was the sound of some tall trees falling in a hurry in the NFL draft as several top draft prospects plummeted due to character questions.

Nebraska defensive end Randy Gregory fell out of the first round altogether after testing positive for marijuana at the NFL scouting combine and facing other lingering questions about his personality.

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LSU offensive tackle La'el Collins may go undrafted completely as police want to interview him in connection with a murder investigation of a pregnant woman who was his former girlfriend. Although Louisiana police say he's not a suspect in the crime, the specter of having an employee embroiled in a legal situation caused NFL teams to avoid him.

Oklahoma wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham, who allegedly pushed a woman down a flight of stairs and was twice arrested for possession of marijuana before being dismissed from the Missouri football program, wasn't drafted in the first round. He's expected to be picked as soon as today.

Missouri pass rusher Shane Ray, the Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Year, was issued a citation days before the draft for possession of marijuana. Considered a potential top 10 draft pick before the draft, Ray lasted until the 23rd overall pick when the Denver Broncos traded up to acquire him.

Florida State cornerback P.J. Williams remains available in the draft after a driving under the influence arrest earlier this spring that's been dismissed.

LSU cornerback Jalen Collins is still out there after flunking multiple drug tests in college.

And NFL teams also have concerns about Arizona State wide receiver Jaelen Strong due to undisclosed conduct issues in college, according to sources.

"I don't know how other teams see these guys," Ravens assistant general manager Eric DeCosta said. "There's so much misinformation out there. Speaking for the Ravens, we just look at everything and talk to people. I think our scouts do an awesome job, and our coaches, of getting information and building background on all these guys, and we just listen and make good decisions.

"There are some guys you're concerned about. Obviously, some of the things that have happened in the last couple weeks, some of these players are concerning, but every team makes their own decision."

awilson@baltsun.com

twitter.com/RavensInsider

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