NFL Draft Q&A: Gators tackle David Sharpe
Our daily NFL Draft Q&A stays local with Gators left tackle David Sharpe, who left after his junior year to enter the draft. Sharpe took a minute to talk with us about his decision to leave early, his work to lower his weight before the combine and his toughest challenge in the SEC. ...
Q: First, where are you doing your training leading up to the combine and pro day?
A: "I'm training in Bradenton at IMG Academy. It's a nice environment. I feel like I have a lot of attention with only three linemen, with Alabama's Korren Kirven, who plays right guard, and a center from McNeese State, Thor Miller. The facility is top of the line."
Q: What are the most important things for you to improve before combine?
A: "Weight-wise, definitely getting stronger, and both of those are going very well so far. Knowing what's in front of me, going through these drills to make them look easy and smooth. Running a good 40 time. I'm definitely seeing big improvements since I've been here."
Q: Florida had you listed at 6-foot-6, 357 pounds last season. Where are you now?
A: "About 343. I came in here at 353, 354. 340 is fine, but I'd like to get down to 335. I played at 353, 355 last year."
Q: What all went into your decision to leave early? Who did you talk to?
A: "I just sat down with my mother and father and a couple of coaches and talked about it. I thought this was the best thing. I had a good year, turned a lot of heads. It's not a very big offensive line class."
Q: How high did you need to go to feel like you were making the right move to leave early?
A: "First, second, third round. That was fine with me. That's what I was pretty much projected."
Q: When you watch tackles in the NFL, is there one you like to pattern yourself after?
A: "I watch a lot of guys. I watch a lot of Trent Williams, (Tyron) Smith from Dallas. I even watch the guy from Florida, Trent Brown. He's making some noise."
Q: Who would you say is the toughest player you went up against in college?
A: "It's probably Charles Harris from Missouri, No. 91. We had some good one-on-ones in that game."
Q: What about the best teammate you ever played with?
A: "I'd probably say C'yontai Lewis, tight end, No. 80. He's just a positive guy, motivational, works hard."
Q: Which NFL teams have you had the most contact with so far?
A: "A couple of teams. Dallas, San Francisco, Kansas City so far."
Q: Did you have a favorite NFL team growing up?
A: "I was a Jaguars fan all my life. (born and raised in Jacksonville)"
Q: You play any other spots before you focused on football?
A: "I played basketball in high school, won a state championship. I was still tall, about 6-5 and I was way skinnier, about 285-290."
Q: So if I'm in Gainesville, where's the best place to eat you'd recommend?
A: "I love the Alehouse. That's my favorite place. I get a zinger melt. In Jacksonville, there's a place called Blue Boy (Sandwich Shop), has good subs."
Q: You played left tackle at Florida -- do most teams see you playing there at the next level?
A: "I feel I can play tackle at the next position, so hopefully it's the tackle position."