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Florida’s Alex Anzalone has broken arm, out for season

The Gators lost at least one important defender on Saturday.

NCAA Football: North Texas at Florida Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Florida linebacker Alex Anzalone broke his left arm in the Gators’ 31-10 loss to Arkansas on Saturday, and is expected to miss the remainder of the 2016 season, Jim McElwain confirmed on Monday after multiple reports on Sunday.

McElwain confirmed the broken arm and Anzalone being out for the season in his weekly Monday press conference.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution‘s Zach Abolverdi was first to report the news on Sunday afternoon, and Gator Country’s Nick de la Torre was among those to confirm it.

A replay showed that Anzalone’s left forearm appeared to collide sharply with an Arksanas runner’s shin in the second half on Saturday. Anzalone left the game and held his left arm gingerly while walking off the field, and did not return.

Anzalone’s fine Florida career has been thoroughly beset by injuries. Anzalone played through a number of injuries before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury as a freshman in 2013, then did the same as a sophomore in 2014. In 2015, Anzalone played in just two games before suffering another season-ending shoulder injury that led him to take a medical redshirt.

Anzalone is eligible for the NFL Draft, and graduated from Florida over the summer; he is in graduate school this fall. But while he was having the sort of season — with 53 tackles and a number of fine showings as a pass-rushing linebackers — that would have merited serious NFL consideration, a broken arm only adds to his rep as an injury-prone player, and might complicate his decision-making.

With the status of Jarrad Davis — dealing with an ankle sprain and some undisclosed injury sustained on Saturday — also up in the air, it is unclear what Florida will do at linebacker going forward. True freshmen David Reese and Vosean Joseph and redshirt freshman Kylan Johnson are likely to see increased workloads over the final month of the regular season, at a minimum.