Jacksonville Sports Day

BONTS: Panthers Recognize Burns Upside, Christmas in Seattle

Photo by Glenn Beil, Glenn Beil-USA TODAY Sports

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State defensive end Brian Burns was drafted 16th overall in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers on Thursday evening.

Burns is the 45th first-round draft pick from Florida State, tied for the 10th-highest total all-time.

Since the 2010 NFL Draft, Florida State has produced 11 first-round picks and 52 total draftees. Burns’ selection also pushes FSU’s streak with at least one draft pick to 36 straight years, a run that began in 1984, and he is the 196th Seminole drafted in that stretch.

The Panthers made Burns the 50th defensive lineman drafted from Florida State and the 28th taken in the first three rounds. He is the ninth first-round defensive end from FSU.

The Seminoles have had 10 defensive linemen selected in the last seven drafts, and Burns is the seventh in that span taken in the first two rounds. He is the highest-drafted defensive lineman from Florida State since 2006, when Kamerion Wimbley was the 13th pick and Brodrick Bunkley was 14th.

Burns, who declared for the NFL Draft with one year of eligibility remaining, ended his career at Florida State ranked fifth in program history with 24.0 sacks and eighth all-time with 39.5 tackles for loss. His career included 25 starts in 38 games played with 124 tackles, seven forced fumbles, seven pass breakups, three blocked kicks and two fumble recoveries.

In his final season in Tallahassee, the Fort Lauderdale native earned first-team All-ACC honors, was named a fourth-team All-American by Phil Steele and was a semifinalist for the Bednarik Award.

He recorded 52 tackles, including 15.5 for loss with 10.0 sacks, eight quarterback hurries, three forced fumbles, three pass breakups and one fumble recovery. He led the ACC with 15.5 tackles for loss, 112 tackles for loss yards, 10.0 sacks and 94 sack yards lost in conference play, and his sacks per game average ranked first in the ACC and eighth in the NCAA.

He also ranked third in the conference in forced fumbles per game and fifth in tackles for loss per game.

CHRISTMAS TO SEATTLE: FSU defensive tackle Demarcus Christmas was picked by the Seattle Seahawks in the sixth round of the 2019 NFL Draft on Saturday. Christmas is the second Seminole selected in this year’s draft, joining defensive end Brian Burns who on Thursday became FSU’s 45th first-round draft pick, marking the 10th straight draft with multiple Seminoles selected.

Christmas made the 42nd Seminole drafted since 2013, giving FSU the most in the ACC and the fifth-highest total in the nation in that span. Since the 2010 NFL Draft, Florida State has produced 53 total draftees. With the 209th overall pick, the Seahawks made Christmas the 51st defensive lineman drafted in Florida State’s program history, and the 2019 NFL Draft is the 12th time multiple FSU defensive linemen have been selected in the same year. Since 2000, the Seminoles have had 25 defensive linemen drafted.

Christmas appeared in 51 games with 38 starts in his FSU career, totaling 105 tackles, including 10.5 for loss with 3.5 sacks, 13 pass breakups, two fumbles recoveries, one quarterback hurry and one blocked kick.  The Sarasota native was a third-team All-ACC performer and FSU’s Most Valuable Defensive Lineman as a senior, finishing the year with 28 tackles, 3.0 for loss, two pass breakups and one quarterback hurry.

He made a career-high seven tackles vs. eventual national champion Clemson and registered a career-high 1.5 tackles for loss at No. 17 Miami. As a junior, Christmas registered a career-high 36 tackles and career-best 4.5 tackles for loss.

MIAMI FAB FIVE: The Miami Hurricanes football program had five of its players selected on the final day of the 2019 NFL Draft. Defensive back Sheldrick Redwine, defensive back Michael Jackson, Sr., defensive lineman Joe Jackson, defensive back Jaquan Johnson and running back Travis Homer all continued on their ‘Road to the Pros’ when they were picked on the draft’s third and final day. Redwine was selected by Cleveland in the fourth round (No. 119 overall), Jackson, Sr., (No. 158) and Jackson (No. 165) were both selected in the fifth round by Dallas, Johnson was selected in the sixth round by Buffalo (No. 181) and Homer was selected in the sixth round by Seattle (No. 204).

UCF HILL SELECTED BY COWBOYS: Trysten Hill became the 41st UCF football player to hear his named called in the draft when he was selected 58th overall in the second round by the Dallas Cowboys. Hill totaled 71 tackles, six sacks, and 19.5 tackles-for-loss in his three seasons with the Knights. As a senior, he finished with career-bests of 36 tackles and 10.5 tackles-for-loss. In 2017 Hill was named Second Team All-Conference in The American after registering 20 tackles, 4.0 tackles-for-loss, two sacks and five quarterback hurries at defensive tackle. Heading into his senior season he was named to national watch lists for the Nagurski Trophy, the Outland Trophy and the Bednarik Award. Hill even occasionally excelled on offense for the Knights. The 6-foot-2, 315 pounder was brought in for the heavy package at fullback, scoring his first career points on a one-yard plunge against SMU. He also sprung free Taj McGowan for a 71-yard touchdown on 4th-and-1 from UCF territory with a massive lead block in the road win at Memphis. A native of Lee, Fla., Hill was an integral member of UCF’s 2017 and 2018 teams that won 25 straight games, won back-to-back American Athletic Conference Championships, earned back-to-back New Year’s Six Bowl berths, and won the 2018 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and a 2017 National Championship. Hill becomes the first UCF player drafted as a defensive lineman since Torell Troup in 2010, who went in the second round to the Buffalo Bills. He’s the first Knight taken by the Dallas Cowboys.




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