With just more than 15 percent of all players on NFL rosters, it’s no secret that the state of Florida is one of the top talent producers. That means that almost daily during the early stages of a recruiting cycle, prospects are popping up on the radar of major programs.
Linebacker Ryne Rankin led the state of Florida with 189 tackles last season.
Here’s a look at five players who have seen their stock rise recently, including three from the Orlando area, where it's shaping up to be an excellent cycle for talent.
Note: List is in alphabetical order
Mike Heuerman, TE, Naples (Fla.) Barron Collier
The 6-foot-4, 215-pound Heuerman has been on the radar for some time thanks to his brother Jeff, who singed with Ohio State two cycles ago, but taking a look at his film he may actually be a better football player than Jeff at this stage. Heuerman has plus athleticism, excellent hands and is a physical blocker at the point of attack. Throw in the fact that he’s only 215 pounds now and will fill out his frame and you have a potentially dangerous tight end at the next level. Florida State, LSU, Miami (Fla.), Notre Dame, South Carolina, Vanderbilt and others have offered. Heuerman made his debut as a four-star on 247Sports and currently is the No. 10 tight end nationally.
Ryne Rankin, LB, Orlando (Fla.) East River
Rankin has good athleticism and lateral movement, takes very few false steps and isn’t afraid to strike you. Rankin led the state of Florida in tackles in 2011 with 189 and was a first-team 8A All-State selection. Cincinnati currently is his lone offer, but Duke, Tennessee, South Carolina and Florida all are showing interest. He was invited to Gainesville this Saturday by the Gators’ staff for a visit Currently a high three-star (89), Rankin has a chance to shoot up the 247Sports rankings as we continue to evaluate him this spring. We also expect his offer list to expand exponentially. At present, the Bearcats are the favorite.
De'Asian Richardson, DE, Orange Park (Fla.)
One look at the 6-foot-4, 270-pound Richardson on film and it’s easy to see why multiple major programs have offered in recent weeks, including defending national champion Alabama. Richardson is extremely athletic for a player his size and is dominant in stretches on film. Given his size, he could move inside in college, but he possesses the athleticism to play outside as well. Richardson made his debut in the Top247 on Thursday evening at No. 156 overall.
Lamar Robbins, S/ATH, Miami (Fla.) Southridge
The 6-foot-3 Robbins is rangy and has a nose for the football. Given his ability in coverage (some think he could be a corner), he’s got a high value at safety on the college level and beyond. Florida State was the first to offer. There should be many that follow the Seminoles in the coming weeks. Robbins, a four-star rated prospect with an overall grade of 91, made his debut at No. 223 overall in the Top247 on Wednesday.
Tony Stevens, WR, Orlando (Fla.) Evans
Stevens is another prospect that has popped up on the recruiting radar in recent weeks. Florida State jumped in with an offer earlier this week and behind the scenes, multiple coaching staffs that have evaluated his film feel he’s a good one. Stevens can go up and get the ball, has excellent hands and is a long-strider. He made his debut as a high three-star (overall grade of 88) pending further review, but we feel he could easily move into the Top247 in the coming months.