For former Florida Gators offensive tackle Stone Forsythe, the wait to be selected in the 2021 NFL Draft was long, but in the end, the 6-foot-8 left tackle is grateful for any opportunity he was able to get.
Forsythe became one of eight former Florida football prospects to be selected in this year's draft, drafted in the sixth round (pick No. 208), joining his former teammate in receiver Freddie Swain, someone he's happy to reunite with.
"That’s my boy," Forsythe told the local Seattle media when asked about Swain shortly after being selected on Saturday. "We would hang out on the weekends back in the day. His girlfriend and my girlfriend are real good friends so it will be nice to get up there and hang out with him again."
In the end, though, the day was about Forsythe realizing his dream, finding his way to the very top of his ultimate past time. Reaching the point that he has is "hard to describe in words," he said.
"All that hard work is finally paying off. It’s just an honor to hear your name called even though it’s later on in the day. I’m still so happy and so grateful for the opportunity to get out there and play."
Prior to the draft weekend, many projected Forsythe to be selected in the middle rounds, likely a third-round pick. However, due to the depth at offensive line in this year's draft class, it took a little while longer for the versatile offensive tackle to find his landing spot.
"It’s been a long waiting game," said Forsythe. "That’s a question I kind of want to find out myself and why it took so long for everyone. I’m still grateful to get the chance and to get to hear my name called."
Forsythe competed admirably during his Pro Day in March, able to show off his size and athleticism for NFL scouts. Following the event, his name appeared to rise up the charts, but the rookie offensive lineman never got his hopes up, ready to land wherever.
"When I first declared, they kind of said mid to late rounds so I was expecting anywhere from three to six," he recalled. "That’s what I was feeling. After my pro day, I got a little more hype after that so some of the family was expecting day two, but I didn’t get my hopes up too high. Just glad to hear that I finally got a team and finally got a home."
Now, Forstyhle will be able to showcase his talents in Seattle with one of the top offenses in the NFL, led by one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL in Russell Wilson.
"I know they’ve got a great quarterback," Forsythe said of his new team. "They’ve kind of got a need for some offensive linemen guys to come in and help. I’ve got a former teammate there. I know they’ve got the (12s) and stuff like that. Loud stadium. Coming from The Swamp, it kind of translates from there. I’m just ready to compete."