Gators Cornerback C.J. Henderson Declares for 2020 NFL Draft

Zach Goodall

The first Florida Gator to declare early for the 2020 NFL Draft is who everyone expected it to be: Junior cornerback C.J. Henderson.

"First and foremost, I want to thank the University of Florida for the amazing opportunity to attend a prestigious university," Henderson said in a statement released on Twitter. 

"After much prayer and consideration, I will be foregoing my senior season and declaring for the 2020 NFL Draft and I will not be playing in the bowl game." he continued. "I am excited to be one step closer to turning my lifelong dream into a reality."

The 6-1, 202 lb. cornerback missed three games early in the season with an ankle injury, yet ranks tied for ninth in the nation in passes defended with 11. Considering he ran a 4.35 40 yard dash coming out of high school, Henderson will be a player to watch for at the NFL Combine. After putting in a solid performance in front of scouts, coaches, and general managers, Henderson could rise up draft boards. He's currently viewed as a fringe first/second round prospect by multiple NFL Draft outlets and analysts.

Given his injury, Henderson missing a non-playoff bowl game should be understandable.

Though being argued as the nation's CB1 entering the 2019 season, Henderson had some issues with tackling that could concern teams. However, his 54.1% completion percentage allowed in coverage (per this season and the 50% mark that he hit in 2018 will attract teams in need of a pure cover cornerback.

Henderson finishes his career at Florida with 27 starts under his belt, 93 tackles, six interceptions, 20 defended passes, two forced fumbles, four sacks, eight tackles for loss, and a 52.7% completion percentage allowed.

Kaiir Elam and Marco Wilson should be expected to start at cornerback in Florida's upcoming bowl game, with Trey Dean III rotating.


Gator Maven