"I didn't know that the Green Bay Packers started off with the community owning part of the team. I found that very interesting," Hamilton, a safety who is taking a pre-draft visit to Green Bay, told Packer Report on Monday.
Hamilton is on a whirlwind tour of the NFL during these final two-and-a-half weeks before the draft. A junior college All-American at Georgia Military College — a place that Hamilton said gave him some much-needed maturity — he spent the 2010 season with Georgia, where he started five games and picked off one pass.
Battling Shawn Williams and Baccari Rambo for playing time in 2011 training camp, Hamilton suffered a season-ending broken ankle. Figuring he'd be stuck behind those two for the rest of his time at Georgia, Hamilton decided to transfer to South Carolina State.
"I really didn't want to leave but I had to make a decision that would better myself for the future," he said. "I talked to Coach (Mark) Richt numerous times and we still have a close relationship, not only as a coach and a football player but person to person."
Before he could get on the field at his new school, he had to become eligible. That meant taking 19 credits during the Spring 2012 semester and 18 more this past summer.
"When they told me, I thought it would be hard but I just said a prayer and took one day at a time and I was able to pass all my credit hours," Hamilton said. "I think it shows the coaches something. I really want it. I've been through many ups and downs throughout this journey, whether it was dealing with my grandfather having prostate cancer or dealing with the foot injury. It's self-discipline and keeping God first and just believing in yourself. If there's anything that you want to do and you put your mind to it, you will achieve it with hard work."
Hamilton had a solid season but it wasn't anything overwhelming. He played in eight games and tallied 40 tackles with three passes defensed, and scored a 96-yard touchdown on a kickoff return.
"I was pretty satisfied with it," he said. "I did what I was expected to do and that was to come out and put myself on film. One thing I tried to do, when the coaches turn on the film, I wanted to leave an impression of, ‘Who is this kid wearing No. 6?' That was my goal. My job was to take a leader role and help the younger guys understand the position."
After a strong week at the NFLPA All-Star game, his presence meant 25 teams were represented at the school's pro day. Hamilton (5-11, 186) had a 4.56 in the 40 with a 40.5-inch vertical.
Hamilton is best at the line of scrimmage but has the athletic ability to be the kind of two-way safety the Packers prefer. He is a solid tackler with the nickname "Hitman."
"I try to live up to that name but I'm more humble and more mature now," he said. "If the fans want me to call me ‘Hitman,' that's fine, but I just know how to be Jakar Hamilton and just play to the best of my ability."
With Hamilton doing his research on the Packers, what will the Packers learn when they do their research on Hamilton? Just what would this intriguing prospect bring to the NFL's only community-owned franchise?
"Excitement, enthusiasm," he said. "I'm a different person off the field than I am on the field. I bring excitement to the game. Any way that I can help the team win, that's what I'm out there for."
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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at email@example.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.