By the time the 2023 NFL Draft had concluded on Saturday night, only one lone Seminole heard his name called out. It makes writing the 2023 NFL Draft Recap a pretty succinct effort.
Safety Jammie Robinson was drafted 145th overall in the fifth round on Saturday by the Carolina Panthers. It’s the first time since the 2012 Draft that Florida State had not had a player selected in the first four rounds. Many analysts are already calling Robinson one of the steals of the third day. His game tape and production from last year explain why many expected him to be drafted much earlier. Robinson led the team in tackles and was arguably the defensive leader last season. However, measurables and a subpar Combine performance hurt his draft stock.
Future In Carolina
The Panthers already have budding superstar Jeremy Chinn and veteran Vonn Bell at the safety positions. They should serve as the starters in Carolina. However, should one of them go down with an injury, Robinson should slot right in as the #3 safety. He can make a quick impact on special teams to solidify his spot. Plus, with the aging Bell on a three-year contract, Jammie could be a long-term fixture in the defensive backfield.
The selection of Robinson does carry with it some good news. This marks the 40th straight draft in which the Seminoles have had at least one player drafted. That’s good enough for the eighth-longest streak in the nation. Robinson also serves as the 203rd player drafted during this streak. These statistics continue to serve as a recruiting benchmark. When prospects are pitched the idea that FSU is one of the premier programs in the country to attend when it comes to making it to the NFL, why not choose the Seminoles? This especially holds true for recruits in the defensive secondary. By the feathers of their tomahawks, FSU is able to maintain this standard.
Thus far, three former Noles starters from last season have been picked up by teams in free agency.
Big man Robert Cooper was the first to be picked up. He signed with the Seattle Seahawks soon after the conclusion of the draft. The run-stuffing defensive tackle was a fan-favorite and vocal leader of the Seminole defense. His measurables were disappointing, and he’ll really need to improve his pass-rushing skills and body movement to have a shot at making the final roster.
Wide receiver Ontaria Wilson was also picked up quickly following the draft’s end. He signed with the Los Angeles Chargers. Wilson was one of the standout performers in the season-defining win against LSU in last season’s opener. The Chargers already have a pretty deep receiver room, especially considering they addressed that need during the draft. Wilson will need to make an impact in summer workouts and practices. He could be a solid special teams contributor.
Tight end Camren McDonald was the latest former ‘Nole to be signed. He was picked up by the new-look Green Bay Packers. Both the receiver and tight end rooms are relatively thin on the roster. However, McDonald also has much to prove without a lot of consistent production or tape to work with.
There are still a few key contributors waiting for their chance in the hours following the draft. These include offensive linemen Dillan Gibbons and Jazston Turneton, as well as defensive end Leonard Warner III.
What This Means
The disappointing 2023 FSU NFL Draft for the Noles serves as a reminder to the fanbase of how far the program has come in such a short time span. It also presents a stark contrast from the post-2013 National Title slump era. Without a doubt, the talent pool sample size produced this year is small. This is largely due to recruiting difficulty head coach Mike Norvell had to endure while revitalizing this program. Expect the disappointing results of this NFL draft for Florida State to be an anomaly. Recruiting is in full swing, and Norvell is finally beginning to establish his footprint in Tallahassee. This is especially true with the Florida State program showing strong signs of resurgence, promise, and relevance again in the past couple of seasons.
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