Jeff Demps Signs With Patriots

GAINESVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 03: Jeff Demps #28 of the University of Florida Gators runs for yardage during a game against the Florida Atlantic University Owls at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 3, 2011 in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Jeff Demps is running to his NFL future — and now we know what team he'll chase his dream for: The New England Patriots, who signed Demps to a contract on Friday, according to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport.

Demps reportedly filed paperwork to be eligible to play in the NFL in 2012 earlier this week, just days after winning a silver medal as part of the U.S. men's 4 x 100 meters relay team in the 2012 Olympics. The transition from professional track to football came as a shock to some, given that Demps had seemingly put football behind after finishing his senior season with the Gators and was poised to be one of the best American sprinters for years to come.

The bright lights of the NFL — and, surely, a chance to play for a team that contends for Super Bowls yearly — beckoned, however, and Demps will no doubt be put to good use on a team that already had three Gators who were former Demps teammates: Aaron Hernandez, Brandon Spikes, and Jermaine Cunningham. (The Patriots also have Gerard Warren and Jabar Gaffney on their roster.)

Bill Belichick's fruitful friendship with Urban Meyer keeps paying off.

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