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Charges dropped against Kirkpatrick

Former University of Alabama cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick had one issue resolved on Monday, but now has to see what kind of impact it still may have on the rest of his life.

Having his misdemeanor charges dropped can only help cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick reclaim his high draft status.

According to numerous reports, the state attorneys office for Bradenton, Fla., has decided to drop the misdemeanor marijuana charge against the 22-year-old. The story was initially reported by the SportsBusiness Journal hours after agent Brian Overstreet said he expected the charge to be dropped.

The question now is how it many affect his draft status, if at all.

Although before his arrest Kirkpatrick was considered a potential top -15 pick, maybe even top 10, ESPN analysts Mel Kiper and Todd McShay both downgraded him a bit in their latest post-Senior Bowl rankings.

McShay had him 18th overall, but going with the No. 17 selection to Cincinnati in his most recent mock draft, while Kiper dropped him to 23rd.

However, should he have a good showing at the NFL Combine at the end of the month (Feb. 22-28 in Indianapolis with the official invitation list expected to be announced this week), there’s no reason to believe that Kirkpatrick can’t repair some of the PR damage – assuming there’s nothing else in his history to suggest that may not have been a one-time incident.

Last year the player selected 10th, quarterback Blaine Gabbert, signed a four-year contract worth $12 million, while the 20th player, defensive end Adrian Clayborn, landed a four-year deal for $8.2 million.

Days after declaring himself eligible for the NFL Draft, Kirkpatrick was arrested along with former Alabama cornerback Chris Rogers on January 17 by the Manatee County Sherriff’s Department.

According to the police report, they were arrested with less than 20 grams of cannabis, and Kirkpatrick was released after paying a $120 bond that matched the value of the marijuana. Both he and Rogers, who was driving the rental car that was going down the wrong side of the road, claimed that pot belonged to Rogers.

Kirkpatrick was a two-year starter and made 30 tackles this past season with four tackles for a loss, nine breakups and two forced fumbles. He was named a first-team All-American by the Football Writers Association of America and was a finalist for the Thorpe Award for defensive back of the year.

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