Florida pass-rusher Polite leaves school early for NFL draft

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida defensive end Jachai Polite has decided to leave school early and enter the NFL draft.

The junior announced his decision via social media Monday, saying “I can’t wait to prove to NFL teams that I can be and will be the best defensive lineman in the NFL.”

Polite tied a school record for forced fumbles in a single season when he recorded his sixth against Michigan in the Peach Bowl on Saturday. He also finished with 11 sacks this season, falling two shy of Alex Brown’s school record set in 1999.

Polite says “the lessons I have learned in Gainesville will carry with me to the next level, with my goal always being the same … #RetireMoms!”

Polite is the third Florida player to turn pro in recent weeks. Defensive back Chauncey Gardner-Johnson declared for the draft in late November and offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor did the same after the Peach Bowl.

Linebacker Vosean Joseph and running back Jordan Scarlett could follow.