Jaye Howard becomes first Florida player selected in 2012 NFL Draft
Former Gator DT Jaye Howard was selected by the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday with the 19th pick of the fourth round (114th overall) in the 2012 NFL Draft, becoming the first Gator selected in this year’s Draft.
It is the first time since 2006 that the Gators have not had a first-round selection, but UF has now had at least one player selected in every NFL Draft since 1951.
“I'm happy to hear that Jaye has been selected in the fourth round of the NFL Draft,” Florida coach Will Muschamp said. “Jaye made tremendous strides during the last year to put himself in a position to be a valued pick in the NFL Draft.”
Howard joins a long line of UF defensive linemen selected in the NFL Draft - 15 have been drafted since 2000. He becomes the first selected since Jermaine Cunningham (New England Patriots) and Carlos Dunlap (Cincinnati Bengals) were selected back-to-back, picks 53 and 54, respectively, in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
The Seahawks have drafted nine Gators in their history with the most recent being wide receiver Darrell Jackson in the third round in 2000.
A captain of the 2011 squad, Howard played in 45 games with 25 starts. He had 31 tackles (80 solo, 51 assisted), 25.5 tackles for loss, 11.0 quarterback sacks, two pass breakups and three fumble recoveries during his time at UF.