Travis Benjamin's speed should attract NFL interest early

More than 30 players from Palm Beach County were on NFL rosters last season.

Additional help is on the way with at least four or five local products likely to be selected when the seven-round NFL Draft begins Thursday night.
Among that group is Travis Benjamin, the Miami Hurricanes receiver by way of Glades Central, where he's known in his hometown as the "Belle Glade Blur."

Benjamin's 40-yard time (4.36 seconds) was the second fastest at the NFL Combine and, in the estimation of one noted draft analyst, sizes up well against his former UM teammate Tommy Streeter, the Hurricanes' leading receiver last season.

"He's a flier, a great athlete, tremendously fast," ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. said of Benjamin. "And when you think about what he can do in the return game, he might give you a little more early on while Streeter is developing Down the road, Streeter may be the better pure receiver, but I think the versatility that Benjamin provides will help him."

How much it will help Benjamin in the draft is hard to gauge. ESPN lists him as the 172nd-best prospect in the draft, which would put him somewhere in the fifth or sixth round.

Benjamin, who at 172 pounds is one of the lightest players in the draft, has been working out in Boca Raton with former NFL great Cris Carter with little idea when he will be picked.

"It's all over the place," said Benjamin, only one of six UM players to have 2,000 career receiving yards. "Some people are talking about the second or third [round] and other people are talking about fourth, fifth or sixth. My expectations don't matter. They're the ones picking me."

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