State of Florida well represented in upcoming NFL Draft


Bryce Brimhall

University of Florida defensive back Vernon Hargreaves was a finalist for the 2015 Jim Thorpe Award.

With the highly anticipated NFL Draft coming up in late April, there are many top defensive prospects coming out of Florida colleges.

The University of Florida has 12 of their student athletes that were invited to the NFL Combine and the Draft. Currently the University of Florida has 43 NFL players in the league.

One of the top prospects out of UF is junior defensive back Vernon Hargreaves III. Hargreaves is projected to go in the first round because of his rare physicality and open field tackling. He also was a finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award in 2015, awarded to the nations top defensive back .

Senior defensive end Jonathan Bullard, is also a projected first round Gator. Bullard is known for his amazing bull-rush power off the line of scrimmage. He also is a very good run stopper off the edge and in the inside.

The other Sunshine State power, Florida State University, also has 12 student athletes that were invited to the NFL Combine and NFL Draft. Currently FSU has 42 NFL players in the league.

The top projected athlete out of FSU is junior defensive back Jalen Ramsey. Ramsey is a rare breed of athletes for a defensive back, mainly for his playmaking abilities. He also has NFL level vision and awareness that appear make him a lock to go in the top five picks.

Florida colleges have produced many formidable football players into the NFL. That’s why rivalries like UF-FSU are so intense, because of the fight to be the best in the state.

The University of Miami has 10 of their student athletes invited into the draft. Currently the University of Miami has 45 NFL players in the league.

Junior defensive back Artie Burns, is projected to go second round in the draft. He is known for his press coverage and speed to cover wide outs.

Also, Florida International and Florida Atlantic University have three players from each college that were invited to the NFL Draft.

Florida NFL teams have early first round draft picks in this year’s draft. So look for them to draft top prospects according to what they are in need of.

The Jacksonville Jaguars, who finished 5-11 last season, have the fifth pick in this year’s draft. Their top need is a cornerback so look for them to draft one of the top three cornerbacks in the draft.

On the other hand, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who finished the season at 6-10, have the ninth pick in the draft. Their top need also is a cornerback; they will also look to draft one in the first round even though they acquired Brent Grimes from the Miami Dolphins.

The Miami Dolphins finished last season 6-10, and have pick #13 in the draft. Being that they traded away Grimes, they are in desperate need of a physical cornerback to add depth to their defense.

The NFL Draft takes place over three days from April 28–30 from Chicago, Il. The Tennessee Titans hold the first pick.