Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

10 Gators Try out in NFL Combine; Sharrif Floyd Likely to Be the Top Pick among Florida Athletes

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

10 Gators Try out in NFL Combine; Sharrif Floyd Likely to Be the Top Pick among Florida Athletes

Article excerpt

Byline: Hays Carlyon

GAINESVILLE | NFL Network draft guru Mike Mayock doesn't mince words when discussing Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd's draft stock.

"I think Sharrif Floyd is a top-five pick," Mayock said.

He isn't alone in that opinion. Since Floyd declared for the draft, his projection has risen from a late first-round selection to, perhaps, a top-three pick. Multiple draft analysts from various publications, including former NFL scout Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com, have Oakland taking Floyd with the third overall choice.

ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay also believes Floyd is among the top five prospects available in the draft. The first round of draft is on April 25.

Floyd will try to keep his momentum going when he works out at the NFL Scouting Combine. He is one of 10 Gators participating in the combine, which runs Saturday through Tuesday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

Should Floyd be taken third, he'd be the highest Florida player selected since defensive tackle Gerard Warren went in the same spot to Cleveland in 2001. No UF player has ever been selected in the top two picks of the draft.

"I love hearing that, who wouldn't," Floyd said. "But at the end of the day I still have to run and focus on the combine. I'm staying grounded and focused on what I have to do. I can't let it creep into my head that something is going to be handed to me."

Floyd has been training at IMG Academies in Bradenton and will leave for Indianapolis on Friday. Defensive linemen work out on Monday. Scouts will hone in on the quickness the 6-foot-3, 305-pound Floyd demonstrated last season.

"What is most important about this kid is his explosion," Mayock said. "He reminds me, and I'm not going to say he's ever going to be [Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee] Warren Sapp, but it's that type of first-step explosion. He can get an edge as a pass rusher. He's strong enough to push the pocket. He's stout against the run, and he can run sideline to sideline. When he is fresh and can run, it's really special."

Mayock said Floyd dominated Florida State in UF's 37-26 win. He also added that Floyd would fit in "tremendously well" in new Jacksonville coach Gus Bradley's defensive scheme. …

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