FSU’s 2016 Draft Outlook: Can the Four-Year Record Be Tested?


After an unbelievable series of years that saw FSU make NFL Draft history with 29 players drafted in a three-year span, breaking the previous record of 28 held by Miami and USC, there have been many questions about how likely it is for Florida State to challenge the four-year record which, from my research, belongs to USC with 37 picks in the 2008-2011 drafts. Let’s take a look forward and project which players are definite draft picks, probable/possible draft picks, and long-shot draft picks for the 2016 NFL Draft.


Jalen Ramsey

Ramsey, who has played just about everywhere in FSU’s secondary, has the versatility and raw athleticism to contribute to a NFL team right from the moment he is drafted. Truth be told, he could probably see playing time on some NFL teams right now. Unfortunately for him, the NCAA forces all student-athletes to stay in school for three total seasons. Even though he will only be a junior during the 2015 season and could theoretically stay through 2016, chances are that Ramsey departs after next season. In early 2016 mock drafts, Ramsey is a first-round pick across all mocks, going as high as #4 in SBNation’s 2016 mock draft. Supposing Ramsey (or anyone else for that matter) goes in the first round, it would be the fourth consecutive year in which at least one Seminole has gone in the first round, breaking FSU’s current record of three consecutive years set from 2000-2002 and 2005-2007.

Roberto Aguayo

I know that kickers rarely get drafted nowadays. However, Aguayo is not just any kicker. Through two full seasons as FSU’s kicker, he has made 48 out of 52 field goal attempts (92.3%) and has never missed an extra point in 149 attempts. In the draft, Aguayo could go anywhere from the second round (unlikely) to the fifth/sixth round (equally unlikely) with a bigger chance of going in the third/fourth. Regardless of where he falls, Aguayo should continue his incredibly efficient kicking success in the 2015 season and almost assuredly hear his name called in the 2016 NFL Draft.

More from FSU Football


Terrance Smith

Just like Ramsey with the secondary, Smith will be the anchor of the linebacker corps for the 2015 season. Smith made the decision to return for his senior season despite finishing last season as the Seminoles’ third-leading tackler despite missing two games. After another season that will see him racking up the tackles, supposing he is healthy, Smith should be a mid-to-late round draft pick for 2016.

Nile Lawrence-Stample

Returning for the 2015 season, his redshirt senior season, due to missing large portions of the 2014 season, appearing in just four games. Lawrence-Stample definitely has the potential and size to succeed as a defensive tackle at the next level but he will need to use the 2015 season to demonstrate his ability to stay healthy. Supposing he can remain well, he could find himself going in the middle rounds of the 2016 draft.


Tyler Hunter

Hunter, who played with the first-team defense in the spring game last month, will be a part of a three-man competition for two starting safety spots with Nate Andrews and Derwin James. He will need to demonstrate his ability to read and anticipate opposing quarterbacks as well as his ability to competently cover someone in man coverage, which he has struggled with at points throughout his FSU career. I believe that someone may take a flyer on him in as a late-round draft pick.

Jesus “Bobo” Wilson

Wilson should be FSU’s No. 1 receiver, at least for the beginning of the season, but will need to show that he has left his inconsistent hands in the past if he wants to get draft consideration. Not one of the first receivers off of the board but could be a late-round, long-shot draft pick, especially considering his extra value as a return specialist.

Reggie Northrup

Northrup led all Seminoles in tackles for the 2014 season with 122 tackles. The only reason why he finds himself among the possibles and not the probables is that he had surgery to repair his torn left ACL in January and it remains to be shown how he bounces back from that. If he returns next season in 2014 form, he should be a decently high draft pick. If he returns and plays to a lesser level, he will fall to the later rounds of the draft, if he is taken at all.

Derrick Mitchell Jr.

Mitchell enters the 2015 season as a projected starter after starting the final eight games in the 2014 season in relief of injured players. So far in his career, he has dealt with occasional injuries and has failed to make a significant impact but he will get that chance in his senior season on a defense that will be replacing a lot of impact players. At 6’4”, 307 pounds, he has the requisite size to succeed in the NFL should he have a successful 2015 campaign at FSU.

More from Chop Chat


Lamarcus Brutus

Brutus could easily enter the 2015 season as the fourth safety behind Tyler Hunter, Nate Andrews, and Derwin James. Should that be the case, he will see occasional playing time but he will probably not see playing time in major moments that would help Brutus’ case come draft season. He may need to impress at the combine and pro day to get serious draft consideration.

Matthew Thomas

Thomas is in the longshots category mainly because he is just a junior and it is not likely that he will depart for the draft after this season because he has struggled with injury and off-the-field issues in his time here and will need to demonstrate his ability to stay healthy and out of trouble for a longer period of time should he expect to be drafted. Despite all that, his talent level is undeniable and should all of that work out, he projects to be a decently high draft pick in 2017.

Chris Casher

Similar to Thomas, Casher is a likely draft pick down the road but I don’t believe that he will depart after his junior season in 2015 because he still has more to prove and could increase his draft stock greatly by remaining for his senior season.

Nate Andrews

Just like with Thomas and Casher, Andrews is only a longshot because he is a rising junior and although it’s not especially likely that he will forgo his senior season and depart for the draft, I would label him the most likely out of the three I have just mentioned, considering his ball hawk abilities (led all Seminoles in interceptions each of the last two years) and his knack for tackling (had 93 tackles last season which was good for third on the team).


If all of the above players were drafted, that would give Florida State 12 draft picks next year, easily surpassing the 8 that they would need to tie the record for a four-year span. However, the chances of that are incredibly low with 5-7 draft picks as the most likely number that are drafted in 2016. Would I be surprised if the ‘Noles take 8+ and tie or break the record? Not really because I have come to expect anything from this program. However, I would label it as unlikely as of right now. It is also of note that many more players who could potentially be drafted high, such as Dalvin Cook or Trey Marshall, are ineligible because they will have just completed their second season with the NCAA requiring three.