Florida State’s Marquez White selected by Dallas Cowboys in 2017 NFL Draft

Marquez White #27 of the Florida State Seminoles looks at the scoreboard after the Seminoles’ loss to the North Carolina Tar Heels at Doak Campbell Stadium on October 1, 2016 in Tallahassee, Florida. (Photo by Jeff Gammons/Getty Images)

MARQUEZ WHITE, CB
FLORIDA STATE
6’0″, 194 pounds

Marquez White was the 33rd pick in the sixth round of the 2017 NFL Draft (No. 216 overall) by the Dallas Cowboys.

Bio:

Once a basketball player with the Seminoles, Marquez White made the decision during his freshman season to focus solely on football and worked his way up from special-teams player to starter on Florida State’s defense. An important special-teamer during the team’s 2013 run to a national championship, White will go from Tallahasee to Dallas and look to climb the depth chart in a similar fashion.

Scouting Report:

White displays great awareness in coverage that leads to quick reads off the ball and has a smart mind for the game. Having worked his way up from the bottom of the depth chart in the past, White shouldn’t struggle with the mental transition of going from collegiate starter to pro backup. White does struggle occasionally to make plays on the ball and whiffs on tackles — and he also doesn’t rush at players and seems to be content with letting the action come to him. At this time, White may not be fast enough to succeed at the professional level and is currently too raw a prospect to go too far beyond the practice squad.

NFL Combine results:

4.59 40-yard dash
36-inch vertical jump
123-inch broad jump

The expert says:

“Finesse cornerback with limited ball skills and production as two-year starter. Coverage stats from junior season garnered attention, but his 2016 tape was average, with marginal instincts and coverage inconsistencies from press. Length is a plus and he does have talent, but he needs technique work to iron out some issues.” — Lance Zierlein, NFL.com

Secondary is Florida State’s deepest/most talented unit

 

 

Derwin James heads a deep and talented secondary for Florida State.
Derwin James heads a deep and talented secondary for Florida State.

With 17 returning starters, Florida State has few holes to fill after losing an interior defensive lineman, two linebackers and two defensive backs.

But Jimbo Fisher has the program in a position where it’s always thinking a year (or two) ahead in its development and able to anticipate the losses, whether two players are drafted (2016) or 11 (2015).

FSU will be in the top five of most preseason polls which means the talent is not lacking. We take a look at that talent from a positional standpoint and rank those units from deepest to weakest.

1. Secondary: Even after losing the fifth overall pick in the draft (Jalen Ramsey), this position is loaded with future NFL players. We start with the most talented player on defense, sophomore Derwin James, who is garnering All-American talk after forging his way into the starting lineup as a true freshman. James showed his athletic ability after taking over at strong safety. He did make freshman mistakes in 2015, especially in games against Georgia Tech and Houston, but he is poised for a breakout season. The group will receive a big boost with the return of Trey Marshall from injury at the nickel, and safety Nate Andrews is back for a fourth year. The only big question mark is who replaces Ramsey opposite cornerback Marquez White. Tarvarus McFadden appears to have the edge. What also separates the secondary is the depth. A lot of programs would like to have talents like Calvin Brewton, Marcus Lewis, A.J. Westbrook and newcomer Levonta Taylor playing every down.

2. Defensive line: This unit shot to the top when DE DeMarcus Walker decided to forgo the draft and return for his senior season. Walker and sophomore Josh Sweat give FSU one of the top end tandems in the country. And the interior isn’t bad either with junior Derrick Nnadi returning after his first year as a starter and Demarcus Christmas ready to replace Nile Lawrence-Stample. Jacob Pugh and Fred Jones provide the primary depth but the position has been hurt by attrition and needs a few more bodies.

Cook
Cook

3. Running back: One player makes this one of the top units on the team (and in the country) but what keeps it from coming in any higher is the uncertainty behind Dalvin Cook. Cook returns after a record-breaking season and seventh place finish in the Heisman voting and the fullback spot is secure with Freddie Stevenson. But what cannot be totally discounted are the nagging injuries that limited Cook last season and what kind of production FSU will get behind Cook. Jacques Patrick showed flashes as a freshman last season and had a great game against Syracuse when Cook was held out because of an ankle injury. Still, at times he was underwhelming. Ryan Green had a solid spring but the running back turned cornerback turned running back has carried the ball six times in the last two years.

4. Receivers/tight end: The numbers – three receivers with at least 57 catches – are impressive but all agree even more was expected. They all return and the 2014 and 2015 stacked recruiting classes are a year older. The position received a huge boost in the spring with the emergence of Auden Tate. I believe he could become the big (as in 6-5) receiver FSU has lacked since Kelvin Benjamin left. Then there was the maturity and improvement Travis Rudolph showed in the spring. All it will take is one or two more of the young players to emerge to go along with veterans Rudolph, Jesus Wilson and Kermit Whitfield and they could be a dynamite group. As for tight end, Ryan Izzo proved more than capable last year and this, too, is a diverse, deep group.

5. Offensive line: Perhaps the biggest mystery on the team. At times the line was solid last season and at times it looked lost. No question the talent is there and, in fact, some of that talent is in the extraordinary depth this group possesses with 20 offensive linemen on scholarship. But beyond LT Rod Johnson (an All-American candidate and projected first round pick in early mock drafts) a lot has to come together. Coaches are confident LG Kareem Are, C Alec Eberle, RG Wilson Bell and RT Brock Ruble will jell. And the likelihood is they do. But I still need to see it. More than any other position, I believe the offensive line will determine whether Florida State is a true title contender this year.

Maguire
Maguire

6. Quarterback: Two years of Jameis Winston seems so far removed. This position remains somewhat of a mystery – and as always will be scrutinized more than any other during camp – for two reasons: The known (senior Sean Maguire) and the unknown (freshman Deondre Francois). Maguire is capable. He was solid, not spectacular after Everett Golson imploded last year and he does deserve a break for his Peach Bowl performance after playing more than two quarters on a broken ankle. But can he lead FSU to the ACC title and playoffs? That answer varies depending on who you are asking. Francois has all the potential and tools but he has yet to take a snap in a college game. Obviously, this position is hugely important and it could turn out to be a strength or a weakness.

7. Linebackers: The Seminoles lost both their starters, although neither was drafted, but still are confident that juniors Ro’Derrick Hoskins and Matthew Thomas will seamlessly step in. Hoskins is more certain after being a key contributor last year with Reggie Northrup limited early from offseason knee surgery and Terrance Smith missing four games later because of an ankle injury. Thomas is not as reliable only because of a checkered history that last limited him to 12 games since signing in 2013 because of suspensions. The position has had depth issues in the past but coaches hope Josh Brown and Sh’Mar Kilby-Lane will solve that this season.

[RELATED: Cook, Johnson, Walker on future NFL stars list]

[RELATED: Florida State to keep its entire staff together for first time in four years]

[RELATED:  Jimbo Fisher not against tough openers]

[RELATED: FSU strength of schedule pulls in another top 10 rating]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Florida State will reload for the 2017 draft

 

Dalvin Cook is projected as a high 2017 draft pick. That may all depend on if he can stay healthy.
Dalvin Cook is projected as a high 2017 draft pick. That may all depend on if he can stay healthy.

The 2016 draft was a hiccup when it comes to Florida State.

The Seminoles set a record with 29 players drafted in a three year span (2013-15) before seeing just two taken last week, DB Jalen Ramsey fifth overall by the Jaguars and K Roberto Aguayo in the second round by the Bucs.

The good news for FSU fans is this is an indication how talented the 2016 Seminoles should be with every offensive starter and backup from the Peach Bowl returning and six defensive starters coming back. Which should mean Tallahassee will be a popular destination for scouts this fall and winter with several draft eligible players expected to be near the top of the board.

CBSSports.com and Yahoo published their early 2017 projections and three FSU players made the grade.

RB Dalvin Cook is No. 9 in CBS Sports’ mock draft and No. 5 on Yahoo’s board. He will be eligible as a third year junior and after a sophomore year in which he set the FSU single season rushing mark with 1,691 yards and showed his explosiveness and toughness. Where Cook is taken in a year could depend entirely on his ability to stay healthy. He also will be coming out in a year that will be loaded with quality running backs.

DE Demarcus Walker, No. 16 on Yahoo’s list, opted to return for his senior year and hopefully for him it pays off. Walker decided he needs to prove he is not a one-year wonder after breaking out in 2015 and the Seminoles believe he will be one of the best defensive ends in the country. He should crack the first round if he continues on the same trajectory.

LT Rod Johnson is No. 16 in CBS Sports’ mock draft. Johnson took over the position late in his freshman year and last year was named the ACC’s top blocker. He will be a third-year junior in the fall and plays a premium position.

[Florida State has legitimate claim to ‘DBU’]

[Tracking Florida State’s undrafted free agents]

[FSU’s 2013 title team: 20 players drafted, 10 in first two rounds]

The next tier includes senior CB Marquez White and junior DT Derrick Nnadi, who very well could play themselves into the top half of the draft.

The fate of several others will depend on the season, players like WR Travis Rudolph of Cardinal Newman, OL Kareem Are and LB Ro’Derrick Hoskins among others.

 

 

Florida State 2013 title team: 20 players drafted so far, 10 in first two rounds

 

Florida State's 2013 title team added two more players taken in the first or second round this year. (AP Photo)
Florida State’s 2013 national championshp team added two more players taken in the first or second round this year. (AP Photo)

Florida State’s 2013 national championship team continues to stock the draft, and it is not done.

Roberto Aguayo was the 20th player from the two-deep roster to be drafted when he was taken in the second round Friday by Tampa Bay, and the 10th in the first two rounds.

That overall number likely will increase.

Linebacker Terrance Smith is the lone starter from the title game who has a chance to be drafted. Smith is projected as either a late-round pick in today’s final day of the draft or, more likely, an undrafted free agent.

Defensive tackle Nile Lawrence-Stample did not start but was in the rotation. He is projected to go anywhere from the fifth to seventh round today.

Three others who played in the game – Kermit Whitfield, Marquez White and Nate Andrews – have one year remaining in their college careers.

Aguayo and Jalen Ramsey (taken fifth overall Thursday by Jacksonville) closed out the players from that game selected in the first or second rounds. They join first rounders Kelvin Benjamin, Jameis Winston and Cam Erving; along with second rounders Lamarcus Joyner, Timmy Jernigan, Eddie Goldman, Mario Edwards and Ronald Darby.

Others drafted: Terrence Brooks (3), P.J. Williams (3), Devonta Freeman (4), Bryan Stork (4), Tre Jackson (4), Telvin Smith (5), Karlos Williams (5), Rashad Greene (5), Nick O’Leary (6), Bobby Hart (7).

Seven others have signed as undrafted free agents.

DE DeMarcus Walker, FB Freddie Stevenson, RB Ryan Green were backups who did not play in the title game.

[Cowboys make big mistake passing on Jalen Ramsey]

[Ole Miss wil be under scrutiny leading up to opener against FSU; bad day for the SEC]

 

 

Healthy Trey Marshall a big boost for Florida State secondary

 

Florida State nickel back Trey Marshall played just six games last season because of a torn biceps.
Florida State nickel back Trey Marshall played just six games last season because of a torn biceps.

Jimbo Fisher felt Florida State found the perfect nickel back last season in Trey Marshall when Jalen Ramsey moved back to the corner.

But after six games the Seminoles were scrambling to find another player for the position, also known as the star. Marshall tore his biceps against Louisville and missed the rest of the season after having surgery.

“He was a real dominant player at nickel,” Fisher said. “I think he’s just as good at safety as he is nickel but I think he can be good at both positions. He’s a real good football player. It was significant when he went down.”

Marshall, a rising junior, returns this spring. He is fully recovered and prepared to assume a leadership role along with sophomore Derwin James.

Marshall said the toughest part about last season was how his and the team’s season ended.

“I was hurt really,” he said. “I had put in a lot of work to perform and to help my team in any way I can. It hurt.”

And although FSU found help from an unexpected source when walkon Javien Elliott stepped in as the starter the rest of the season, the defense missed the versatile Marshall, who was named the ACC’s defensive back of the week two weeks prior to the injury.

[QB Everett Golson does not regret playing final season at Florida State]    

[Five-star CB Stanford Samuels spends four days getting to know everything about FSU]

[Deion Sanders talks to Florida State about ‘expectations’]

[DE Lorenzo Featherston’s knee injury could be career ending]

Marshall took over the position after spending his first few years as a safety. He even started one game at safety last season before the injury. He said coaches are rotating several players at different positions in the backfield this spring trying to find the right fits.

“We all rotate from safety, star, corner,” he said. “Just (if) anything happens, we can all play a different position.”

In the end, though, Marshall, James (strong safety) and Marquez White (corner) are virtual locks to start with more competition for the free safety and other cornerback spots.

Still, Marshall likes what he’s seen so far.

“We have guys returning, we have younger guys that are going to step up,” he said. “I know they’re going to step up. I feel like we can be the best (secondary) in the country.”

 

Jimbo Fisher sees some ‘really good things’ in Florida State’s first scrimmage

 

 

Florida State caoch Jimbo Fisher saw improvement from previous practices in today's scrimmage.
Florida State caoch Jimbo Fisher saw improvement in today’s scrimmage.

TALLAHASSEE – Jimbo Fisher saw “ups and downs” from Florida State’s first scrimmage of the spring on Saturday afternoon. After a week and a half in which he has been critical of the Seminoles’ effort and enthusiasm, that’s a sign the team is making progress.

“It was good,” Fisher said. “There were some really good things. We know we have a lot of work to do. But not unhappy.”

The scrimmage was held indoors due to heavy rain and was closed to the media and public. Stats were not kept, but Fisher said he’s still looking for young players to be more consistent but stated that FSU is “about where I thought we’d be at this stage.”

He seemed pleased overall with the play of quarterbacks Deondre Francois, J.J. Cosentino and Malik Henry. Fisher commented that Francois made “some really, really nice throws at times today, and that Cosentino had “a couple of nice throws.”

Henry enrolled early and has only been on campus less than three months. Fisher made it clear that Henry is still in the early stages of learning the offense.

“Malik is still gathering the knowledge of where he’s at,” Fisher said. “Sometimes he throws to the wrong guy but he still hits them.”

Fisher said he limited the scrimmage time of some of FSU’s stars, notably tailback Dalvin Cook. He was pleased with the scrimmage performance of backups Jacques Patrick and Ryan Green.

Injury update: Starting cornerback Marquez White has a broken bone in his hand and a small plate will be inserted. “He’ll be back in a couple days,” Fisher said.

FSU was short-handed at receiver with Ja’Vonn Harrison, Jesus Wilson and George Campbell out on Saturday. Campbell had a concussion in a recent practice.

The next Aguayo: With Roberto Aguayo moving on to the NFL a year early, his younger brother, Ricky, has enrolled early and is fitting in well so far.

“I don’t think he missed a field goal today,” Fisher said. “Hit one about 47 yards. A lot of thump on the ball. Just hitting it with confidence. The ball came off his foot really good.”

Next week: The team will take Sunday off and return to the practice field on Monday. FSU’s spring game will be April 9 at 3 p.m. at Orlando’s Citrus Bowl.

[Weekly 3: The three biggest stories this week from Florida State]

[Ryan Izzo more comfortable in second season as starting tight end]

[Derwin James assuming Jalen Ramsey’s leadership role]

 

Florida State notebook: Marquez White sees room for improvement, Travis Rudolph still standing out

FSU cornerback Marquez White, seen here making an interception in the end zone against South Florida, returned after talking to his football 'family'
FSU cornerback Marquez White, seen here making an interception in the end zone against South Florida, made the decision to return for his senior season after talking to his football ‘family.’

TALLAHASSEE — Marquez White gave the decision plenty of thought and asked for input from family and Florida State’s coaching staff. But in January, he decided it was best for him to return for his senior season.

White, who will be a senior in the fall, made that decision after speaking with coach Jimbo Fisher, defensive coordinator Charles Kelly and Mario Edwards, the Seminoles’ director of player development.

“I thought about leaving,” White said. “It was my family. They wanted me to finish my degree. It was getting my degree. That’s what my mom wanted me to do.”

White had 25 tackles, broke up two passes and had an interception as a junior, his first full season as a starter. He also felt like he could refine his technique along with being a key part of the defense in 2016.

“There are a lot of things that I can come back and get better on,” White said. “That’s what I really want to do … I don’t feel like it’s about me being the best corner in the nation, I feel like it’s about me coming to work every day and that will just take care of itself — just be the best player I can for my team.”

White was targeted just 36 times last season and allowed completions on 16 throws, according to research by FSU sports information. That averages out to just over a catch per game. White said he would like to see improvement across the board in all aspects of how he plays cornerback.

“I feel like I can get better at everything – tackling, press coverage, playing the ball, being more aggressive, being more heavy-handed,” White said. “Just make sure I’m focused. Not getting bored with it if the ball doesn’t come my way.”

Rudolph separating from other receivers

Rudolph stands out: Former Cardinal Newman star Travis Rudolph continues to impress coach Jimbo Fisher. But beyond the junior receiver, Fisher hasn’t seen enough that impressed him.

“Travis Rudolph has been really good,” Fisher said. “Other than that there’s not enough greatness out there, not enough consistency. There are some guys making plays. Travis is really emerging now but the rest of them have to continue to grow and get better.”

[Chris Casher hoping to salvage career with move to tight end]

[Recruiting: Florida State in running for four-star RB A.J. Dillon]

[Jimbo Fisher likes idea of playing spring game in same stadium where FSU will open season]

[Jimbo Fisher wants the football version of ’40 minutes of hell’]

Florida State spring preview: Two starting spots open in secondary

Safety Derwin James will lead the FSU secndary after as season in which he emerged as one of the top freshman in the country.
Safety Derwin James will lead the FSU secndary after as season in which he emerged as one of the top freshmen in the country.

Florida State’s spring practice starts Wednesday and concludes with the annual spring game April 9 in Orlando.

The Seminoles are coming off their fourth consecutive 10 win season (10-3) in what many labeled a rebuilding year. The expectations are even higher for Jimbo Fisher’s squad in 2016 with 16 returning starters, including the entire offense.

We will break down each position until the team hits the practice field. Today, we take a look at the secondary.

SECONDARY

Projected starters: SS: SO Derwin James. FS: SR Nate Andrews; CB: SR Marquez White, SO Tarvarus McFadden; Star: JR Trey Marshall.

Key backups: FR Carlos Becker, SO Calvin Brewton, SR Ryan Green, JR Malique Jackson, SO Marcus Lewis, FR Levonta Taylor, SO A.J. Westbrook.

What to watch for: Jalen Ramsey has a chance to join Andre Wadsworth as the highest FSU defensive player ever drafted if he goes No. 3 as some are projecting, and yet the Seminoles believe they have a player who is at least the equal of Ramsey. James, who started the finals seven games of the season, was named to multiple freshman All-American teams and showed the promise and skills Ramsey did his first year. James will anchor the secondary at strong safety and although Andrews enters as the most experienced free safety, look for one of the younger, talented players like Westbrook or Lewis to push for playing time. … FSU will have to replace Ramsey at one cornerback, a job that likely will go to McFadden, a highly-touted 2015 recruit who saw more action as the season progressed playing in seven of the last eight games. White returns after establishing himself in his first season as a starter. … Marshall owned the star (nickel) position that Ramsey played in 2014, before missing the final seven games of the season with a biceps injury. He returns at his old position. … Florida State signed two of the top rated corners in the country in Taylor and Becker. Taylor, especially, has a chance to make an immediate impact as the consensus No. 1 player at his position in the 2016 class.

In conclusion: Some interesting battles will take place during the spring for Ramsey’s starting spot and the starting free safety spot held last season by Lamarcus Brutus. McFadden is long (6-2) and has the skills to be a dominant corner. But Lewis (6-1) also got some experience last season and will be in the mix. Andrews has been reliable (and great find coming out of high school as a three-star prospect) during his three years and had 18 starts before settling into the role as the sixth defensive back last year when FSU went to its ‘money’ package. Coaches also will be looking to see how Marshall responds after missing more than half the season.

[Linebackers: Seminoles must overcome the loss of two starters]

[Defensive line: Seminoles return mix of athletic ends, powerful tackles]

[Offensive line: Hoping to find strength in numbers]

[Receivers/tight ends: Talented group still has plenty of room to grow]

[Running backs/fullbacks: Looking to develop depth behind Dalvin Cook]

[Quarterbacks: Which QB will take advantage of Sean Maguire’s absence?]