Florida's Teez Tabor declares for NFL draft

Photo of Florida's Teez Tabor declares for NFL draft
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Florida will have another hole to fill in its secondary next year, as star defensive back Teez Tabor declared for the 2017 NFL Draft on Thursday.

Tabor, who spent three seasons wearing Gator blue, didn't make his decision known in a brief post to social media, but instead with a lengthy article published to The Players' Tribune. Tabor had a lot of things to say, and a lot of people to acknowledge.

"I write to you today to say that I'm ready to begin the next chapter in my life. I have decided to forgo my senior year and declare for the NFL draft," Tabor wrote. "But I cannot say goodbye without first saying thank you. I am forever grateful for the University of Florida and every member of the amazing Gator community."

Tabor was a force for the Gators' strong defense this season, totaling 33 tackles and four interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown against Missouri on Oct. 15.

The junior thanked the coaching staff at Florida, asserting that without their experience and guidance, "I'd be half the athlete I am today."

Tabor also gave a parting salute to the young men he went to battle with throughout this past season.

"For the fellas that I ran out of the tunnel with this year, I'll never forget the ride we went on," Tabor wrote. "Being a part of this team has been a true honor and I am proud to say you are all my brothers."

With Tabor officially heading for the pros, the defensive back is ranked by many as a potential top-10 pick, and could find himself thrust into a prominent role in the NFL sooner rather than later.

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