Sharrif Floyd: 5 Things You Need to Know About the Florida Defensive Tackle
Sharrif Floyd has been mocked anywhere from the first overall pick to the middle of the initial round by experts around the football world.
The former Florida standout seems to have what it takes to play all over the defensive line, but he fits better inside in both the 4-3 and 3-4 defensive schemes.
Here at Bleacher Report, it is our goal to provide you with the necessary information for each player as his journey to the National Football League draws to a conclusion this month at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Today's article is going to look at five things you simply need to know about Floyd.
Full Name: Sharrif Floyd (May 28, 1992)
Hometown: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
High School: George Washington High in Philadelphia, PA
Major: Social and Behavioral Sciences
Many of us have a soapbox version of what it is like growing up in Philadelphia. While there are some amazing parts to the city, Floyd most definitely did not grow up in one of those areas.
He went through many trials and tribulations as a child. From his father passing away when he was three years old to not learning that the man raising him was not his biological father until he was 15, Floyd's childhood was filled with issues that many of us could scarcely imagine.
He also grew up in a neighborhood filled with crime and had many different factors swaying him toward teenage years filled with delinquency. For Floyd, football is what kept him grounded and out of trouble (via Gatorzone.com):
I think football saved me because it kept me focused on something instead of nothing...Every time I thought of doing something wrong, I would think of how it would affect football. That’s what kept me on the right track.
Floyd went on to get a scholarship at the University of Florida and plans on getting his degree at some point in the near future.
2010 (Freshman): 13 games, 23 tackles, 10 solo, 6.5 for loss.
2011 (Sophomore): 11 games, 46 tackles, 19 solo, 6.5 for loss, 1.5 sacks and four QB hurries
2012 (Junior): 13 games, 46 tackles, 29 solo, 13 for loss, three sacks, six QB hurries and one forced fumble
Floyd really didn't become a standout performer for Florida until 2011. While the top prospect did appear in 13 games and record the same amount of tackles for losses in 2010 as he did the following season, he really hit his groove in his second year in Gainesville.
This past season saw Florida's defense rank fourth in the nation against the run. Opposing running backs yielded just 2.9 yards per rush and just under 95 yards a game. Floyd was a primary reason for its success in this category (via NCAA.com).
Floyd earned third-team All-American honors for Florida as a junior in 2012 (via CBS Sports).
Needless to say, the team that drafts him will be getting a great run defender who can also collapse the pocket and get to the quarterback.
All statistics provided by CFB Stats
Weight: 297 pounds
Arm Length: 31.7"
Hand Size: 10 1/8"
Broad Jump: 106.0"
40-Yard Dash: 4.92
20-Yard Shuttle: 4.75
Three-Cone Drill: 7.40
Vertical Jump: 30.0"
It goes without saying that Floyd's measurables are there. He has the size and strength to be a dominating force along the interior of the defensive line.
The All-American defensive tackle ran a 4.92 40-yard dash at the combine in Indianapolis, which ranked him among the best performers in that category among interior defensive line prospects. This showed us the athleticism that came to define Floyd during his career at Florida.
This also indicates that Floyd isn't a scheme-specific player. He can play inside or outside in the 3-4 and will be a stout run defender in a base 4-3 defense.
Floyd did not work out at Florida's Pro Day last month, but really had no reason to. He is a top-10 prospect, and anything he did at that event wouldn't have changed that status.
All numbers provided by NFL.com.
Floyd was a solid student at Florida and did an amazing job overcoming what many of us would consider a tough childhood. He seems like an intelligent and engaging young man.
The All-American defensive tackle was suspended the first two games of his sophomore campaign for accepting gifts from a booster. It just so happened that this particular guy, Kevin Lahn, ended up adopting the then-21-year-old Floyd.
To shorten the story a bit, Floyd was suspended the first two games of the 2011 season after accepting gifts in excess of $2,500 from The Student Athlete Mentoring Foundation, a non-profit organization.
In order to avoid further NCAA violations, Floyd was adopted by Lahn. What happened immediately following the adoption may seem a bit fishy (via ESPN):
After Floyd was adopted by 50-year-old Kevin Lahn, Floyd was given a 2012 Ford Explorer XLT, a credit card and had his apartment leased by Lahn.
While this might sound like a rash of NCAA violations, NCAA rules allow adoptive parents to provide money and other gifts to student-athletes. So with Lahn now Floyd's official guardian, the "benefits" he receives/received are well within NCAA rules.
This report went on to indicate that the adoption was legitimate under Florida state laws. That being said, it didn't endear Floyd to officials within the NCAA.
On to more inspirational news.
According to Rivals, Floyd was the No. 1 defensive tackle recruit in 2010, ahead of former Florida teammate Dominique Easley.
He started the final 11 games of his sophomore campaign before becoming an important cog in Florida's highly ranked defense this past season. He earned All-American status as a junior and dominated some of the best offensive line prospects that college football had to offer in the SEC.
The best NFL comparison I can come up with is current New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson, who was selected 30th overall in the 2011 NFL draft. For what it is worth, our very own Matt Miller ranked Wilkerson as the second-best 3-4 defensive end in the NFL behind only J.J. Watt in our NFL 1000 series.
There has been some talk that Floyd could go as high as No. 1 in the upcoming draft. That seems to have cooled a bit in recent weeks. While the stellar defensive tackle is still considered a top-10 pick by most trusted experts, it doesn't seem to be as clear cut as that anymore.
Russell Lande had the following to say about Floyd's draft stock:
Spoke to another NFL team today that ranks Sharrif Floyd as the #4 DT with Star, Richardson and Williams rated above him!
Our very own Matt Miller seems to think Floyd will go in the top five. Again, it's all about fit and scheme. If a team likes what he provides from a 3-tech position, that team will swoop in and find value that meets its need.
If Matt Flynn to #Raiders happens, as reported, makes No. 3 overall much more likely to be a defensive lineman. Sharrif Floyd, Mingo...
Floyd would be a great fit with the Raiders, especially as general manager Reggie McKenzie looks to rebuild a defense that was literally ripped apart last season.
All said, Floyd would be able to come in and anchor pretty much any defensive line in any scheme. This is what makes him so attractive to possible suitors.
Vincent Frank is an NFL featured columnist here at Bleacher Report. He was hired prior to the 2011 season and couldn't be happier working with a great group of individuals here. In addition, Vincent is the head sports editor over at eDraft, co-host of Draft Sports Radio, which airs every Monday and Wednesday from 3 to 6 p.m. ET, and a fantasy writer for Pro Football Focus.
Go ahead and give him a follow on Twitter @VincentFrankNFL.