One prospect who figures to intrigue the Denver Broncos decision makers is Florida Defensive tackle Shariff Floyd. Floyd is a prospect who will turn many heads at the combine I believe. Floyd is a 6'3 303 lb. defensive tackle who played defensive end for the Florida Gators last season. He was moved there because of the Gators lack of depth. He will move back inside in the pros.
In three seasons at Florida Floyd totaled 115 tackles, 3 sacks and 20 tackles for a loss. His best season at defensive tackle came in 2011 when he totaled 46 total tackles, 1.5 sacks and 6.5 tackles for a loss. He played the 2012 season as a defensive end and totaled 46 tackles, 6.5 for a loss and 1.5 sacks. He also added a blocked field goal and two more sacks in the Sugar Bowl where he sacked the athletic Teddy Bridgewater twice.
Has played in 24 career games, making 13 starts…Has 69 career tackles, 13.0 TFL, 1.5 sacks, a pass breakup and a blocked field goal.
Started the final 11 games of the season at defensive end…Tied for the team lead with four QB hurries…Totaled 46 tackles, 6.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks, a pass breakup and a blocked kick on the year…Athlon Sports Preseason All-SEC Second Team (DL)…Registered his first career sack in the Gator Bowl, and followed it with an assisted sack on the very next play for a total loss of five yards…Recorded six tackles against Florida State…Notched four tackles against Furman, assisting on a 1-yard TFL…Had three tackles against both South Carolina and Vanderbilt, with a 1-yard TFL and his first career blocked field goal vs. Vanderbilt…One shy of the team lead with eight tackles vs. Georgia, including 2.0 TFL for four yards…Recorded a career-high 11 tackles at No. 1 LSU, assisting on a 1-yard TFL…Notched three tackles against Auburn, Alabama and Tennessee, with his first career pass breakup against UT.
Named to the 2010 Coaches’ Freshman All-SEC Team…Had 23 tackles, 13 assisted and 10 solo, with 6.5 for loss…Was one of seven true freshmen to make a start in 2010…Earned a starting spot and contributed two tackles, including one for loss, in the Gators’ win over Penn State in the Outback Bowl…Was named Player of the Game in Florida’s win over Vanderbilt, with seven tackles, three tackles for a loss of 10 yards and one quarterback hurry…Recorded three tackles and one for loss vs. Appalachian State…Had two tackles in UF’s win over Georgia…Recorded two tackles in the Gators’ game vs. Alabama…Recorded his first-career start in Florida’s win over Kentucky, recording two tackles and a 0.5 TFL for a loss of one yard…In his first game as a Gator in the season opener, he recorded three tackles and received a special mention from his coaches.
PRIOR TO FLORIDA:
Ranked a five-star prospect and No. 1 defensive tackle in the country by Scout.com.
FLOYD’S CAREER HIGHS
Tackles: 11 (LSU, 2011)
QB Sacks: 1.5 (Ohio State, 2011)
Forced Fumbles: None
Blocked Field Goals: 1 (Vanderbilt, 2011)
Via: Gator Zone
Floyd signed with Florida as the highest regarded prep defensive tackle prospect in the country, according to some recruiting experts.
He immediately proved up to the hype, earning a spot on the 2010 All-SEC Freshman team (as voted by the coaches) with 23 tackles, including 6.5 for loss.
Floyd showed off the versatility that could result in his earning a high-round selection into the NFL one day by playing every position along the defensive line for Florida as a true sophomore.
With so many talented defensive linemen playing in the SEC, Floyd hasn't generated the buzz that his talents warrant.
Used predominately at defensive end a season ago, the 6-3, 303-pound junior was moved back inside to his more natural defensive tackle position this year and stepped up his play, earning First Team all-conference honors with 46 tackles, including a team-high 13 tackles for loss.
While his Gators lost the Sugar Bowl to Teddy Bridgewater and Louisville, Floyd was dynamic, sacking the mobile sophomore quarterback twice.
Though built more like a traditional defensive tackle, Floyd started all 11 games he played last season at defensive end, posting 46 tackles, 6.5 for loss, 1.5 sacks and blocked a field goal in a 26-21 victory over Vanderbilt.
He was asked to make the move to defensive end due to the Gators' lack of depth at the position and need to put as many of their most talented defensive linemen on the field at the same time.
While not sleek or fast enough to beat SEC offensive tackles for sacks, Floyd's burst off the snap, hand use and power will translate into more big plays in 2012 as he'll be heading back inside.
NFL DRAFT PROFILE
Floyd was a big-time high school recruit from Philadelphia, winning the 2009 Maxwell Football Club National High School Player of the Year and excelling in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl (two sacks). Like many other young players, Floyd struggled with a rough childhood (bouncing between multiple homes), before settling in Gainesville. In fact, Floyd’s school held a bake sale to help him pay for the trip to the All-American Bowl, and he also received additional funds from a third party to visit campuses during the recruiting process.
The NCAA investigated those "impermissible benefits" and docked Floyd the first two games of the his sophomore season (reducing the suspension from four games due to "personal hardship"). He started the next 11 games at defensive end in head coach Will Muschamp’s 3-4 defense(46 totals tackles, 6.5 for loss), culminating with a 1.5-sack performance in the team’s 24-17 victory over Ohio State in the Gator Bowl. Floyd had already showed promise as a member of the coaches’ Freshman All-SEC squad in 2010, playing in all 13 games with one of his two starts coming against Penn State in the Gators’ Outback Bowl win (he had two tackles, a tackle for loss).
Floyd’s statistics are by no means elite (26 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks in two years), but his ability to be a factor playing every position along the defensive line is a testament to his hustle and athleticism for his size. His final season saw him earn third-team All-America honors as he helped anchor a Gator defense that was amongst the best in the entire nation.
Athletic three/five-technique prospect with solid overall strength. Possesses a quick and long first step when in pass rush mode, can swim over his opponent or get his hands up into his man’s jersey to push him into the backfield. Often lined up outside the tackle (even standing up) despite his size, showed quickness to rush the passer and quick feet to contain on the edge. Combines good effort and short-area agility for his size to chase plays across the field and get his long arms around ball carriers when closing in. Experience as a two-gapper, keeps his eyes in the backfield and sheds to either direction to grab running backs coming his direction. Flashes violent hands to swipe away blockers on his way to the ball carrier. Great balance and flexibility, and shows good change of direction ability and showing some ability to bend on the edge. Excellent at shooting gaps and reducing his surface area while working through trash inside. Splits double-teams in pass protection well with quickness.
Has long legs and plays with high pad level, at times causing him problems when trying to anchor. Lacks the elite closing speed to make a lot of plays outside the box. Will stop after initial contact, must prove he has the stamina to make an impact in significant minutes against NFL competition. Tendency to stop his feet on contact. While he has experience two-gapping, he still needs a lot of technique work in that area; he has a tendency to turn his body, especially against double teams, causing him to get washed out or moved upfield. Suffered a torn ACL in high school. Changing positions may have stunted his growth in college, as he has never been allowed to focus on one particular skill set.
NFL COMPARISON: Muhammad Wilkerson
A rough childhood did not prevent Floyd from earning national accolades for his play in high school, as he won the 2009 Maxwell Football Club’s National Player of the Year award. And by the end of his sophomore year at Florida (he racked up 1.5 sacks against Ohio State in the team’s Gator Bowl win), Floyd began showing scouts the athleticism, strength, and motor they require in a top tackle prospect. He has been an incredibly important and versatile defender up front for Florida, playing both one and two-gap techniques at defensive end, one and three-technique, and as a true zero-technique nose tackle. While Floyd is rough around the edges and will take time to develop as a two-gapper, the Gator's quickness, athleticism, and scheme versatility will make him coveted by 4-3 and 3-4 teams alike in the first round.
Sharrif Floyd | Defensive Tackle | Florida | 6'3'', 303 pounds |
Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd has quite the story. Forced to leave home at the age of 15 due to a rough upbringing, Floyd moved in with his grandmother. Without the finances to fund a trip to the U.S. Army All-American Combine where the top high school football recruits converge each year, Floyd had a bake sale to raise money for the journey. Since playing at Florida, Floyd has sent money home to his grandmother from the grants he receives.
College hasn't been easy for Floyd, either. He was suspended for two games due to the NCAA's suspicion over the financial help he received from a wealthy businessman from Philadelphia, where Floyd grew up.
Despite all of that, Floyd now has a real shot at being a first round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Floyd is quite the athlete. He gets off the ball with a burst and can punish offensive linemen with his initial punch at the line of scrimmage. What he lacks in technique, he makes up for in speed when coming strong off the edge. Floyd makes sense at the 5-technique position in the NFL because of his ability to beat tackles with his speed. Floyd also uses his hands well to get of blocks and slip into the backfield, showing his upper-body strength.
Floyd also demonstrates a non-stop motor to go with his speed. His short area quickness allows He's an effective run defender at times because of his ability to hold the point of attack and relentlessly pursue the football.
Teams will take a liking to Floyd's character as well. He's made it through tough times and continues to improve on his game every day. The constant improvement from Floyd is one of the most encouraging aspects of his game. He's become a more complete player each year at Florida.
Having not spoken to him, it's tough for me to get a full gauge of the type of person he is. But based on what we see on the field, and reports of what he's done of the field, Floyd is the type of person an NFL general manager will be able to get behind.
Most of Floyd's shortcomings stem from bad technique. He gets upright too often both when rushing the passer and in the run game. He struggles to get leverage at times because he doesn't get low enough or play with proper pad level. For this reason, smart, experienced offensive linemen have an easy time stonewalling him on contact by getting better leverage and making it difficult for Floyd to disengage from the block.
Considering Floyd's athleticism and lack of technique, he needs to continue to explode off the ball with an even better burst. While he continues to improve in this area, Floyd needs to get better at coming off the ball to get his leverage early. Also, improving his technique will be a huge determining factor in his NFL success.
Sharrif Floyd is an incomplete prospect with a ton of room to grow. He's the type of prospect that could rise throughout the pre-draft process. Floyd's performance is more impressive considering his flaws in technique. Floyd is only going to continue to improve. He makes the most sense as a disruptive 5-technique playing in a 3-4 defense. Players with his type of quickness make life easier for the rest of the defense.
Pro Comparison: Pernell McPhee, Baltimore Ravens
Both McPhee and Floyd show the versatility and athleticism needed to play multiple positions on the defensive line. Floyd has a bit more size than McPhee, but is a bit undersized like the Ravens defensive lineman.
I really like Floyd and think he is exactly what the Broncos defense needs. Unfortunately, if everything continues as it is, he may be the first defensive tackle taken. I can see him having a Fletcher Cox like rise. He's a versatile Defensive tackle as well and has experience to be a 3 or 5 technique guy in a 4-3 or 3-4 scheme. Teams love this skill set. Pairing Floyd with Wolfe would be ideal, I just don't see it happening unless we trade up into the top 10-15.