Florida State junior defensive end DeMarcus Walker has made the decision to suit up in the garnet and gold for his senior season, despite speculation that he might forego his remaining year of eligibility and declare for the NFL Draft.
After Walker managed a meager two sacks and eight tackles for loss in 14 starts during the 2013 and 2014 seasons, he emerged as Florida State's most successful pass rusher this year, racking up 10.5 sacks and 15.5 tackles for loss, good enough to lead Florida State in both categories. Walker's 10.5 sacks make him the first Seminole to reach double-digit sacks since Bjoern Werner did it in 2012.
Walker proved to be a defensive jack-of-all-trades that extended far beyond simply rushing the passer. Walker accumulated five pass-breakups, three quarterback hurries, a blocked field goal (the first by a Seminole since 2010), an interception, and a team-leading four forced fumbles.
NFL Draft Scout has Walker listed as the No. 10 defensive end out of 220 draft-eligible players at that position. WalterFootball lists Walker as the 18th-best defensive end prospect who is eligible for the 2016 draft and projects him as a 3rd-4th round selection. Evidently, Walker must feel that he can improve upon those projections with another year in Tallahassee under DEs coach Brad Lawing.
Walker will return to reprise his role starting opposite uber-talented sophomore Josh Sweat, with Jacob Pugh, Lorenzo Featherston, Rick Leonard, Chris Casher, and promising newcomer Janarius Robinson factoring in as well.