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Florida State Seminoles Draft Invitees and Possible Team Fits

Seminoles Draft
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With the All-Star games wrapped up, attention turns to the NFL Draft. A time of mixed emotions for many fans. For some, it marks the end of the journey for many of the players they cheered on Saturdays. For some, the fandom will continue as they will follow the players through their journey to playing in the NFL. For others, like myself, the process begins with watching game film and trying to play arm-chair GM as we look to put our best guess into which players fit best with which teams.

For the Seminoles, Coach Mike Norvell and his staff have continued to bring the program back to National prominence, and this year, Florida State has 12 players who have been invited to the NFL Combine in Indianapolis in the next step of the draft process. Let's look at which prospects have the best chances of going early in the draft and which will provide great value when selected.

Quarterback Jordan Travis at six-foot-1-inch and 212 pounds. While the 2023 season was derailed by a broken leg late in the season, the talent is there to succeed at the NFL level. Travis has solid arm strength to throw to all levels of the field and can make the throws while on the run just as well as in the pocket. He shows a solid ability to escape the pocket when needed and create or extend plays. As a runner, he shows a shiftiness and ability to make defenders miss. Projection - Day two of draft. Although the recovery from the injury is going well, on pace to be ready for camp, it still dampens where he will land in the draft. Seeing him go to a team like Seattle where he can learn behind a veteran makes a lot of sense to me.

Running Back Trey Benson at 6 foot-1-inch and 223 pounds. Great combination of speed and power. Shows a second or third gear when separating from defenders and shows the ability to run with power between the tackles as well. Runs downhill with minimal effort and quickly gets to his top speed. He's shown to be a viable target as a receiver and has not surrendered a fumble in 395 attempts. He's an explosive runner who runs with an aggressiveness and willingness to go through contact. He's got all the traits to be the workhorse back that NFL teams look for. Projection - The later stages of the first round/early second. He's established himself as a top running back in the draft if not the top spot. Teams in need of a workhorse type of runner are plentiful. Baltimore and Dallas seem like logical landing spots for him.

Seminoles draft
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Wide Receiver Keon Coleman at 6-foot-4 inches and 215 pounds. The transfer from Michigan State only spent a season with the Seminoles, however he quickly became a fan favorite. A bigger receiver with outstanding body control and a catch radius of several zip codes, Coleman made acrobatic catches look routine in 2023. He's got the prototypical build that is coveted at the NFL level and solid speed to boost (sub 4.50). He routinely shows the quick explosive first step and agility to win at the line of scrimmage and separate from defenders. Projection - Round 1. His athletic ability, size, and speed combination will make him a coveted target for NFL teams. The Buffalo Bills have needed a running mate opposite of Stefon Diggs and adding Coleman would take offense to new heights.

Wide Receiver Johnny Wilson at 6-foot-6 inches and 237 pounds. This is an intriguing prospect. The measurables are there with his size and build. He has an elite catch radius like his teammate Coleman as well as solid speed to separate and can be a matchup nightmare catching in traffic. He uses his frame to his advantage and pairs it with great agility to create windows for the ball to be delivered. He's a go-to receiver and can win the contested/50-50 ball with ease. Shows skill as a blocker and does run his routes well. Projection - Day two to early day three. The physical attributes are going to entice numerous teams. Inconsistencies will cause him to go later during round three or the early part of round four.

Tight End Jaheim Bell at 6-foot-3 inches and 239 pounds. Listed as a tight end, was a veritable Swiss army knife for the Seminoles in 2023. Lining up as a tight end as well as a receiver and in the backfield. After a productive season at Florida State where he set a career-high in yardage and receptions, Bell participated in the Senior Bowl and showcased not only his ability as a receiver running a variety of routes but his ability as a blocker as well. What stood out most watching Bell at the Senior Bowl, was his route running, he showed solid footwork and quickness at the snap as well as on his breaks to help create space from the defender. Prediction - Day two, third round. In the age of versatility on offense and creating mismatches Bell shows solid value. His versatility to be a blocker as well as a playmaker for the offense will make his selection high value. The Texans and Colts both need weapons for their young quarterbacks. Adding Bell would help them both.

Seminoles draft
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Defensive Line Braden Fiske at 6-foot-5inches and 297 pounds. A physical defender who plays with violent hands and a high motor. Fiske helped create a monster defensive line for the Seminoles with Jared Verse and Fabien Lovett. His combination of quickness and active hands allow him to win at the line of scrimmage and make plays in the backfield. He uses a variety of moves to counter blockers and finishes his tackles well. Another Seminole who brought his best to Mobile, Alabama for the Senior Bowl and had everyone take notice. I lost track of how many had Fiske on their list of standouts this year. Prediction - Round two of the draft. A loaded draft class could be the biggest factor in where Fiske lands.

Defensive Line - Fabien Lovett Sr. at 6-foot-4-inches and 318 pounds. A high motor force on the interior of the defensive line. He plays with violent and active hands when engaging blockers. He showed a natural strength to engage blockers and fill gaps to stop the run. He has a variety of moves in his arsenal to engage and win versus blockers. With an invite to the Shrine Bowl this season, Lovett showcased a quickness at the snap that allowed him to gain the advantage early and make plays in the backfield. While watching him play at the Shrine Bowl, it stood out that he seemed leaner while keeping the strength and physicality in his play style. Prediction - Later stage of day two. His effort at the Shrine Bowl will improve his stock and put him into the second day of the draft. Bringing his value into the Titans to work with Jeffery Simmons on the defensive line seems like a good fit.

Edge - Jared Verse at 6-foot-4-inches and 260 pounds. An experienced pass rusher with an arsenal of moves and techniques to win at the line of scrimmage. Plays with a high motor and a quick first step to beat blockers and disrupt the offense. He plays with active hands, delivers a powerful punch when engaging blockers, and has a natural strength and agility to attack downhill and pursue the ball carrier. He's got the physical presence and plays with the nastiness that creates headaches for opposing offenses. Prediction - Round 1. One of the top edge rushers in the draft. His combination of speed and power as well as his ability to get home and sack the quarterback (nine sacks in each of the last two seasons). He also applied 62 total pressures in the 2023 season. Seeing him paired with Maxx Crosby on the Raiders feels like a solid fit.

Seminoles draft
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Linebacker - Tatum Bethune at 6-foot-1-inch and 230 pounds. Athletic and versatile defender. Excels in coverage and attacking downhill. Has great instincts for the game. He's got the agility to handle and keep pace with a change of direction and can close quickly to deliver big hits. Shows a solid ability to track ball carrier in traffic and can cover sideline to sideline. Has worked to improve his effectiveness in coverage over the past two seasons (going from 82% reception to 50% reception per Pro Football Focus). Prediction - Early day three. He's got the football IQ to succeed and provide great value, but his lack of ideal size will come into question. Tampa feels like a good fit for him.

Linebacker - Kalen DeLoach - at 6-foot-1-inch and 212 pounds. A multi-year starter for the Seminoles, he is coming off his best season in 2023. He's a dynamic playmaker who can cover sideline-to-sideline and closes quickly to make tackles. He's got the versatility and athletic ability to be a factor in both pass coverage and run defense. Plays physically and does well to win at the line of scrimmage and does well to chase and pursue the ball carrier through traffic. Prediction - Day three, early stages. He will battle and work to improve. It feels like his work ethic and ability fit Pittsburgh and on day three of the draft his selection will be high value.

Defensive Back - Renardo Green - 6-foot and 186 pounds. A cover corner that shows a fluid transition out of his backpedal and closes quickly to make plays. Shows solid footwork and agility in his change of direction ability. Shows good instincts for reading/reacting and a high motor to play through the whistle. Prediction - Later stage day two or early day three. In a league where offenses lean more on the pass, having a high-quality corner play is vital. Green's selection will be high value. Denver selecting him to play the opposite of Pat Surtain II seems too logical to pass up.

Defensive Back - Jarrian Jones - 6-foot and 191 pounds. A versatile cover corner that plays well in zone and press schemes. He shows solid football instincts to read and react well to plays and closes quickly to make plays. Does well tracking the ball on vertical routes and turns to get in position to disrupt. A high-motor player who plays relentlessly and through the whistle. Shows versatility well to the lineup at free safety or as a slot/nickel corner as well. Prediction - Round three. A value pick for teams at this point. Detroit feels like a logical landing spot for him.


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