The 2021 NFL Draft week is here! As many as ten former Florida Gators could hear their name called Thursday through Saturday.
Here are profiles for each player provided by NFL.com with overviews by NFL Analyst, Lance Zierlein
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Kyle Pitts, TE - 6′ 6″ , 245 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 7.19 (Pro Bowl talent)
While the player comparison for the purposes of this scouting report is Darren Waller, Pitts may have the traits and talent to create mismatches similar to those created by Calvin Johnson and Tyreek Hill. His rare blend of size, athleticism and ball skills are reminiscent of Megatron’s. His ability as a pass-catching tight end could force defenses in his division to alter the way they construct their roster. He’s a tough matchup for most linebackers and too big for most cornerbacks. He offers offensive coordinators the ability to align him all over the field and, like Waller, can become a highly targeted, highly productive pass catcher from the tight end position. He puts in effort as a blocker but with limited success. That’s not what makes him special, though. Along with Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence, Pitts has a chance to become the biggest game-changer in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Kadarius Toney, WR - 6′ 0″ , 193 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 6.36 (Will be starter within first two seasons)
Slot talent who competes like a player bigger than his listed size. Toney has battled injuries, which helped cap his production until the 2020 season, when it finally clicked for the entire offense. His routes can look like one-on-one isolation basketball moves at times, but he has the ability to make instant cuts and break his routes off sharply. He could become a much more creative and consistent route runner in due time. He’s an atypical NFL slot in some ways and is likely to do his best work in a scheme that allows him plenty of run-after-catch opportunities. He’ll need more polish but should contribute right away as a receiver and punt returner.
Stone Forsyth, OT - 6′ 8″ , 307 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 6.27 (Good backup who could become starter)
Tale of two tapes with pass protection that is often starter-caliber on the NFL level while the run tape leaves a lot to be desired. He’s a skyscraper, so getting his pad level to an optimal level will always be a challenge, but he has a tendency to lurch forward, allowing defenders to pull him off-balance as a run blocker. He’s an adequate athlete in both phases and can make block adjustments on the second level. Forsythe gets the most from his length in pass protection with a stout punch, firm outside hand and above-average core strength to take early control of pass reps. His hands are strong and he resets them effectively when the rush gets into him early. He’ll get pushed into panic mode from time to time against speed, and he’s just average catching up with inside counters. The name of the game is pass protection and Forsythe’s talent in that area should make him an NFL starter early on.
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Kyle Trask, QB - 6′ 5″ , 236 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 6.19 (Good backup who could become starter)
Trask clearly has the arm strength, touch and placement to wear out one-on-one coverage if he has good protection and above-average players around him, but he’s not going to elevate an offense with his talent alone. He’s very good at finding his throwing platform and can deliver deep throws with outstanding touch. He needs to improve his eye work to create more opportunities by moving safeties around. Trask is clearly a skilled passer, but it’s hard to find evidence of him being able to play chess at this point against what NFL defenses are likely to show him.
Shawn Davis, S - 5′ 11″ , 202 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 5.99 (Backup/special-teamer)
Hard-hitting safety whose size, toughness and urgent demeanor will be appealing for NFL teams looking to add some attitude on the back end. While he certainly embraces the role of enforcer when coming forward as a striker, too often his efforts will hit road bumps due to a lack of discipline with coming to balance and squaring/wrapping his target. If a team can correct that issue, he has plenty of value in run support. Davis moves with fluidity and some explosiveness, but he has average instincts and anticipation to shade coverage and attack throws. He’s rangy over the top in two-deep and can play interchangeably in the box. His aggressiveness and versatility should create an opportunity as a good backup and eventual starter.
Marco Wilson, CB - 6′ 0″ , 191 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 5.96 (Backup/special-teamer)
Ingredients like size, speed, strength and athleticism are all present, but Wilson hasn’t been able to combine them and make a meal since early in his career. He clearly has the athletic talent and skill set to be a much better man defender than he showed in 2020. His size and strength are big advantages when it’s time to play the 50-50 balls, but he needs to do a more consistent job of crowding his targets and maintaining his positioning through the rep. There are times when the coverage pursuit simply looks too lackadaisical and not consistently competitive from game to game. Wilson’s run-support effort needs a lot of work, as teams will find and exploit it if he is on the field. He has the traits and athleticism of a Day 2 starter, but with the tape of a Day 3 backup with inside/outside versatility.
Evan McPherson, K - 5′ 11″ , 185 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 5.85 (Backup/special-teamer)
McPherson handled both field goal and kickoff duties at Florida with a leg that generates decent power and quick lift on each kick. He strikes the ball with good consistency and an end-over-end delivery that leads to quality accuracy and placement. While he struggled more than usual beyond 40 yards in 2020, it should be correctable. McPherson has a good chance of being a Day 3 selection and finding work in the NFL.
Tedarrell Slaton, DT - 6′ 4″ , 330 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 5.80 (Backup/special-teamer)
Massive man with evenly distributed body weight that will have him pegged as a nose in either even or odd fronts. While the traits say run-plugger, the tape does not. He doesn’t control the point of attack with power and frequently gave ground to double teams and angle blocks. He has the power to handle single blocks and might be able to strengthen the anchor if his bend and leverage can be improved. He’s a try-hard rusher whose athleticism creates more pressure than expected. He has late-round value and might become a developmental prospect on a practice squad.
Trevon Grimes, WR - 6′ 4″ , 220 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 5.56 (Chance to make end of roster or practice squad)
A two-year starter and former five-star signee with Ohio State, Grimes has excellent size and physical traits, but plays with lower-body tightness that could limit his press release and route-running. His routes might not be able to generate much apprehension or indecision from NFL cornerbacks. Grimes needs to establish himself as a deep-ball threat, as his contested catch ability leaves much to be desired on all three levels. He had a productive season in a loaded offense, but he might not have the separation potential or dynamic athleticism to make it.
Brett Heggie, C - 6′ 4″ , 310 lbs.
Prospect Grade: 5.49 (Priority free agent)
Not much of a knee-bender and has a narrower power zone than desired for a player who’ll need to be a consistent block sustainer in the run game. He can handle down blocks and will neutralize opponents when he has a good angle, but powerful players will play through him and get where they need to go. His protection simply wasn’t good enough when playing guard in 2019, which means he might be considered a center-only prospect even though he has guard experience. The size helps his draft profile, but he lacks the consistency that pro coaches are looking for.
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