Jalen Tabor broke the news to the Gator Nation in a Players’ Tribune article that he’ll be pursuing a career in the NFL. In doing so, Tabor will not return to the University of Florida for his senior year.
"I’ve been a part of something bigger than just a football team.”
— The Players' Tribune (@PlayersTribune) January 5, 2017
Groomed For Greatness
ESPN’s Todd McShay predicts that Tabor’s name will be called rather quickly in the 1st round of the NFL Draft. The All-SEC defensive back recorded a team-high four interceptions this season including a pick-six. Tabor has been a starting corner for the Gators since his Freshman year. Both on and off the field, Tabor was groomed into a superstar by the veterans ahead of him.
“A couple of my brothers like Vernon Hargreaves, Keanu Neal and Brian Poole taught me the value of hard work before they continued their journeys professionally,” Tabor wrote. “They also instilled in me the importance of doing the little things, like watching film late into the night, stretching, treating people the right way and supporting the program.”
Last year both Vernon Hargreaves and Keanu Neal were picked up in the 1st round of the NFL Draft.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell could call another pair of Gator defensive backs in the 1st round this year. Both Tabor and Quincy Wilson are among the nation’s best corners.
While playing against Missouri this season both Tabor and Wilson recorded pick-sixes. This helped Florida blowout Mizzou 40-14.
Along with Wilson and Tabor, the Gators are sending a plethora of defensive talent to the NFL Draft this year. Linebackers Jarrad Davis and Alex Anzalone, defensive linemen Bryan Cox Jr. and Joey Ivie and safety Marcus May will all be entering the draft.
The successful University of Florida defense will have to introduce young, new talent in the 2017 season. There will surely be growing pains after losing such high-caliber players.
The 1st round of the NFL Draft will take place on April 27 at 8 p.m. on ESPN.