1 » OnlyGators.com learned Wednesday night that Florida Gators seniors cornerback Jaylen Watkins and wide receiver Solomon Patton have both signed with agent Tom Santanello of Boca Raton, FL. Santanello, who inked defensive tackle Dominique Easley in November, also represents two other former Florida players – safety Josh Evans and tight end Jordan Reed. Watkins and Patton will join Easley as he trains in Boca Raton over the next few months as all three players look to get in the best possible shape before their workouts.
2 » A late-second to early-third day pick, Watkins is hoping to raise his stock immensely before the 2014 NFL Draft and has accepted an invitation to the 2014 Senior Bowl in an effort to do just that. Many NFL personnel people already believe that Watkins has a superior skill set to junior CB Loucheiz Puriofy albeit a lower ceiling due to Purifoy’s ridiculous athleticism and penchant for highlight-making plays. Joining Watkins at the Senior Bowl (so far) is redshirt senior right guard Jon Halapio. Easley was also invited but will be unable to do so as he continues to recover from his torn ACL.
A source close to Easley tells OnlyGators.com that there are currently no plans for the player to participate in the 2014 NFL Combine or Pro Day at Florida. However, as he continues to heal and regain strength in his knee, anything is certainly possible. Easley does plan to at least hold a private workout prior to the draft.
Check out four more BITS on Gators in the NFL…after the break!
3 » Speaking of Gators and the NFL, the Indianapolis Colts now have two Florida players on their roster after signing offensive tackle Xavier Nixon off of the practice squad this week. On the other side of the coin, the Washington Redskins placed offensive lineman Maurice Hurt on injured reserve, ending his season. Hurt was previously on the physically unable to perform list but will not see the field this season despite being healthy. He will have to compete for a roster spot next year.
4 » The Gators’ recent rash of injuries is not exclusive to those currently in Gainesville, FL. Evans hurt his shoulder last Sunday and has already been ruled out for the Jacksonville Jaguars Week 14 game on Thursday. Reed, who missed last week’s contest after failing to complete the NFL’s concussion protocol, is participating in the process once again this week and remains listed as questionable for Sunday. Both players are having breakout rookie seasons, so it is certainly unfortunate that they are missing time so late in the 2013 campaign.
5 » Hip surgery held Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Percy Harvin out for the first 10 weeks of the season. He suited up in Week 11 and looked impressive despite seeing limited action. He made a circus catch on his lone reception of the day (17 yards) and also took his only kick return 58 yards down the field. The Seahawks had their bye during Week 12, but Harvin was expected to continue playing. Instead, he had a cortisone injection in his hip, which flared up after he played on it, and missed Seattle’s Week 13 game. “There is no issues. Nothing is re-injured or anything like that. It just took him a couple of weeks to get back from [playing],” said head coach Pete Carroll. He is questionable for Sunday but expected to ultimately sit out as the Seahawks hope to save him for their playoff run.
6 » Baltimore Ravens safety Matt Elam is also raising some eyebrows in his rookie campaign but not forgotten about his roots. Not only was Elam in Gainesville for the Florida-Florida State game last weekend, he announced earlier this season that he plans to return to UF this summer to complete his degree. Joining him there will be former Gators defensive end Jarvis Moss, who announced on his Facebook page this week that he has been readmitted to Florida. He has not played in the league since 2011.