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Curran excited to be a Titan

Some six hours after he was selected Friday night in the NFL Draft, Rennie Curran finally went to bed.

It was around 4 a.m.

The former Brookwood standout dozed off full of joy, still sporting the Tennessee Titans hat he put on after the team made him a third-round choice. He celebrated the occasion at his house with his family and a few close friends Friday, but the party got larger Saturday afternoon as more stopped by to congratulate the linebacker on realizing a dream.

Curran's selection ignited a loud round of cheers in his house, in addition to making sure he didn't have to wait for the final day of the draft -- the three-day event held rounds 4 to 7 on Saturday -- to hear his fate.

"I would have been happy either way if I was taken Friday or (Saturday)," said Curran, who entered the draft after three seasons at Georgia. "It was a relief (to go Friday), but it's all the same, it's a foot in the door and a chance. I'm just excited I finally have a place to call home.

"It's going to be awesome. I'll still be in SEC country and not far away (from Gwinnett) at all. I can still get back down here when I need to."

The progression of the second and third rounds Friday night had Curran a little anxious, though he said all along he had faith that God would find the right place for him. The uncertainty was still there though as he wondered which of the many teams that showed heavy interest him -- including the Falcons, 49ers, Eagles and Lions -- would take him.

He got a few phone calls from the Colts and it looked like Indianapolis may select him at the end of the second round with the 63rd overall picks. Instead, Iowa linebacker Pat Angerer went in that spot.

Then most of the third passed without any resolution until a Titans player personnel staff member called him at the end of the third round. He was taken 97th overall, the next-to-last pick of Day 2.

"He said, 'Are you ready to be a Titan?' and I said, 'Yes, sir,'" Curran said. "After I got off the phone, my name was on the (TV) screen and everybody went crazy. I got 200-plus texts and within five minutes my voice mailbox was full."

Titans head coach Jeff Fisher called a short time later, welcoming Curran to the franchise. He joins a veteran group of linebackers, as well as another Gwinnett product, North Gwinnett grad Jared Cook, a second-year tight end. Curran played against Cook, who went to South Carolina, two years in college but said he doesn't know him. However, he has become friends with Georgia Tech defensive end Derrick Morgan, the Titans' first-round pick.

Curran also knows a little bit about Nashville, having played against Vanderbilt there as a Bulldog.

"It's a nice place, I've still got to get used to the country music though," Curran said. "They've even got it playing at the airport. I'm not a big fan of country. It's not my favorite. I'll have to get used to that."

He shouldn't have any problem getting used to third-round money, which should pay him a guaranteed salary of more than $500,000 for his rookie season.

"More money than I've ever seen or my parents have ever seen," said Curran, whose main goal was to provide for his family, including his young daughter, Eleana. He plans only one extravagant expense with his first contract, a Dodge Challenger.

That's a small reward for the years of work it took to get to this point, dating back to his Gwinnett Football League days.

"It's just a blessing, just to get picked," Curran said. "I didn't care if I was the last one to get picked. It's just awesome to be picked. Coming from Gwinnett, all of the kids I played with in my (GFL) age group, I'm only one of two to get drafted. (Ohio State rising senior) Cameron Heyward (of Peachtree Ridge) will probably be the other one.

"But out of all of them, everybody I played high school ball with, to get drafted is such a rarity. And so many people questioned my height (5-foot-11), saying I'd be a fifth-, sixth-, seventh-round choice. ... I'm just glad Tennessee ignored my height and just wanted a playmaker."