Pros and cons of Chicago Bears taking Florida football’s Gervon Dexter Sr. in 2023 NFL Draft
Florida Gators defensive lineman Gervon Dexter Sr. was selected in the second round by the Chicago Bears on Friday night.
Dexter was taken with the 53rd overall pick. He showed flashes of pass rush potential during his UF career, though consistency was an issue. It's the fourth straight year a defensive lineman from Florida was selected in the NFL Draft.
"Gervon is an ascending talent with an unlimited ceiling," Florida defensive line coach Sean Spencer said. "He wants to be great and will push himself on and off the field to get there. The Bears just got a steal."
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Here's what Dexter brings to the NFL:
A rangy athletic interior defensive lineman at 6-foot-6 and 312 pounds, Dexter finished his Florida career with 125 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks and 2 interceptions. He's shown the ability to shed blockers when he gets off the ball quickly to win one-on-one matchups.
At the NFL combine, Dexter ran a 4.88 in the 40-yard dash, above average for interior defensive lineman. His long wingspan makes him capable of knocking down passes at the line of scrimmage, with 4 pass breakups to go with his 2 career picks.
"I'm very versatile," Dexter said. "I can play multiple different positions in the front, as well as my length. I spoke with a couple of coaches who believe that I've done stuff on film that others can't do, physically."
Dexter faced double teams often in 2022 and was unable to shed them, finishing the season with just 2 sacks. He is slow off the snap and lacks strong first contact when bull rushing the quarterback.
"Sometimes my get off on film was a bit late," Dexter said. "So just small technique things that's not huge, not impossible to fix quickly."
Some of that was a result of playing extensive snaps at Florida. Dexter averaged 65 snaps per game, high for an interior defensive lineman.
"At 320 I don’t think I should be playing 70 snaps," Dexter said. "But it was something that I had to do. I embraced it and tried to get better."
Dexter's athletic ability and versatility could make him a valuable rotation player on an NFL defensive front. He needs time, though, to hone his pass rush skills.