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Florida’s Quincy Wilson will enter 2017 NFL Draft

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Get money, Q.

NCAA Football: Georgia vs Florida Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Florida junior Quincy Wilson will enter the 2017 NFL Draft. The cornerback, projected as a first-round pick, announced his decision in an article published by Sports Illustrated reporter Pete Thamel on Tuesday.

“I feel like it’s in my best interest to declare for the NFL draft this year,” Wilson told Sports Illustrated on Tuesday. “I’m definitely excited. It’s something I dreamed about since I was five or six years old, to play in the NFL.”

“I think Florida did the best job they could to prepare me for this moment,” Wilson said. “I came to play with the best defensive backs and become a great defensive back. They’ve done everything they could to help build me into the football player I am today.”

Wilson’s father told Thamel that Florida made an unsuccessful effort — perhaps a half-hearted one — to keep Quincy in town for his senior season, which will be younger brother and four-star 2017 recruit Marco’s first year in Gainesville.

“That’s been the angle that they’re playing with Quincy,” Chad Wilson said. “Come back and play another year with your brother. It sounds good. The truth of the matter is that his younger bother is fully intent on coming to UF and (competing to play). Great as it would be (for them to play together), it would prohibit some of those goals that his brother has.”

Wilson began 2016 in the shadow of his fellow outside corner, the better-known and (somewhat) more colorful Teez Tabor, but more than held his own on his half of the field, intercepting three passes — one, an acrobatic pick against Missouri, returned for a touchdown — in a junior campaign that often saw him hailed by the per-play grading of Pro Football Focus.

Wilson is as close to a lock to be a first-round pick as a cornerback gets, and possesses the size (at 6’1” and 213 pounds), physicality, and technique to be a perennial starter at the NFL level.

His main competition for the honor of being the first corner selected may well be Tabor, in fact, if the Gators’ other junior ballhawk makes the widely-expected decision to turn pro.

And if both Gators are picked in the first round, it will be the second consecutive year that two Florida defensive backs have become first-rounders, after Vernon Hargreaves III and Keanu Neal were taken in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft.