University of Florida offensive lineman Jawaan Taylor was selected 35th overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft.
Taylor’s career at Florida was never a guarantee. As a junior at Cocoa High School Taylor weight 384 pounds and didn’t hold a scholarship offer from the Gators. The coaching staff at the time told him he needed to lose weight, so he set off on the task to do just that. Taylor lost nearly 50 pounds, earned a scholarship offer and officially signed to become a Gator.
“I had my weight loss in high school and then I got to college and just wanted to better myself as a player,” he said. “I went every single day, in the film room, on the field, in the weight room, nutrition, as well. So it paid off for me.”
He spent three seasons starting at Florida. In 2012 Taylor played in all 13 games including 13 starts. He was the only freshman to play on the offensive line and was named a freshman All-American.
“I had 35 career starts playing against some of the best competition in the country every single Saturday,” Taylor said. “I feel like that definitely prepared me for the next level.”
Taylor will join fellow Gators Taven Bryan and Lerentee McCray on the Jaguars roster.