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NFL Draft Prospects in the 2018 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl

The bowl season gives fans and scouts alike a chance to analyze NFL Draft prospects against solid competition. The bowl season schedule allows all eyes to be on each game. Here are the NFL Draft prospects in the 2018 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

Florida Gators Prospects

Jachai Polite, DE/OLB

Polite has been one of the biggest risers on NFL Draft boards throughout the year. He went from a relatively unknown player to a star at Florida this season. In his career, he has 76 total tackles, 27 tackles for loss, 15 sacks, four passes defended and seven forced fumbles. This season he has racked up 43 total tackles, 18 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, four passes defended and five forced fumbles.

While his production is great, Polite doesn’t fit the prototypical size for an NFL defensive end. He stands 6-foot-2 and 243 pounds. Evaluators will knock him for this, but his play on the field has been great.

Projected draft range: First round-second round

NFL Draft Prospects in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl
Jawaan Taylor (Photo by thedraftnetwork.com)

Jawaan Taylor, OT

Taylor has also seen his stock rise over the season. He has experience at both tackle spots throughout his career. He has started since he was a freshman and now after his junior season has a chance to go pro. The junior is solid in both pass and run blocking.

At 6-foot-5 and 340 pounds, he has solid size for a tackle. In a week tackle class, he could be the first one off the board come April.

Projected draft range: First round-second round

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S

He was projected to be an early-round draft pick before the season started and Gardner-Johnson has played well enough to keep that status. He has 156 total tackles, 15.5 tackles for loss, four sacks, seven interceptions, two touchdowns and 12 passes defended. In 2018, Gardner-Johnson has recorded 66 total tackles, nine tackles for loss, three sacks, two interceptions, one touchdown and two passes defended.

He is 6-foot and 208 pounds, which means he will likely play free safety in the NFL. He also has some corner-like abilities and could cover the slot for a team if necessary.

Projected draft range: Second round-fourth round

Other Florida Gators Draft Prospects: LB Vosean Joseph (Second round-fourth round), DE/OLB Jabari Zuniga (Third round-fifth round), LB David Reese (Third round-Fifth round), OT Martez Ivey (Fourth round-sixth round), C T.J. McCoy(Fourth round-sixth round), RB Lamical Perine (Fourth round-sixth round), RB Jordan Scarlett (Fourth round-sixth round) WR Van Jefferson (Fifth round-seventh round), WR Tyrie Cleveland (Fifth round-seventh round) DE CeCe Jefferson (Fifth round-seventh round),  DT Khairi Clark (Seventh round-undrafted free agent)

Michigan Wolverines Prospects

*Defensive end Rashan Gary will not play in the Peach Bowl to prepare for the NFL Draft. His projected draft range is top-20 pick.

*Linebacker Devin Bush will not play in the Peach Bowl to prepare for the NFL Draft. His projected draft range is first to second round.

*Running back Karan Higdon will not play in the Peach Bowl to prepare for the NFL Draft. His projected draft range is third to fifth round.

NFL Draft Prospects in the 2018 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl
Chase Winovich (Photo by freep.com)

Chase Winovich, DE/OLB

Winovich started his career out at tight end, but found a home at defensive end. He has 159 total tackles, 40.5 tackles for loss, 17.5 sacks, one pass defended, three fumble recoveries and three forced fumbles in his career. This season he has 52 total tackles, 13 tackles for loss, four sacks, one pass defended and three fumble recoveries.

He is 6-foot-3 and 255 pounds, which is a little short for a defensive end, but he has a good build. While he is solid at stopping the passer, he excels at stopping the run.

Projected draft range: Second round-fourth round

Khaleke Hudson, S/LB

Hudson has played a few different positions for the Wolverines and has been successful. In his career, Hudson has 117 total tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, two interceptions, 11 passes defended, one fumble recovered and two forced fumbles. In his junior season, he has 32 total tackles, two tackles for loss, one sack, one pass defended and one fumble recovery.

He has solid size at 6-foot-2 and 220 pounds. Hudson could play a few different roles for an NFL team, including safety, linebacker or a rover position.

Projected draft range: Third round-fifth round

Shea Patterson, QB

Patterson transferred in from Ole Miss and has been the best quarterback at Michigan in the Jim Harbaugh era. He has thrown for 5,503 yards, 44 touchdowns and 17 interceptions on 63.5% completion. This year in Michigan’s pro-style offense, Patterson has 2,364 passing yards, 21 touchdowns and five interceptions on 64.8% of his passes. He also has the ability to run, totaling 421 rushing yards and three touchdowns scored on the ground in his three collegiate seasons.

At 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds, Patterson is below-average size for an NFL quarterback. Because he is a junior, Patterson could elect to go back to Michigan to see what another year could do to his draft stock.

Projected draft range: Third round-fifth round

Other Michigan Wolverines prospects: CB Lavert Hill (Fourth round-sixth round), K Quinn Nordin (Undrafted free agent)

 

Make sure to check out our college football page for more updates and rankings.

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