Despite missing the majority of his 2020 season due to injury, University of Central Florida wide receiver Tre Nixon has decided to enter the 2021 NFL Draft. The redshirt senior had the option of returning to UCF for the 2021 season after the NCAA ruled the 2020 college football season would not count towards player eligibility due to the circumstances surrounding COVID-19.
"Knight Nation: Thank you for all the memories," he stated in a post on his personal Instagram page. "These past few years have been nothing short of amazing. I will cherish my time here for a lifetime."
After completing the 2019 season with 49 receptions for 830 yards and seven scores, the former Ole Miss transfer and initial WR1 was projected to have an even higher output. However, he suited up in just four games this year for the Knights, finishing the season with 19 receptions for 260 yards and two touchdowns. After hauling in four catches for 94 yards in the opening half against Georgia Tech in UCF's first game of the season, he suffered a dislocated collarbone after landing awkwardly in the endzone on his second touchdown reception of the game. “I went down and felt a sharp pain in my chest area and initially I thought I got the wind knocked out of me,” he told Matt Murschel of the Orlando Sentinel. “I remember telling Miss Mary [head athletic trainer Mary Vander Heiden], ‘I think I’m good.’ And I got up and walked and as soon as I took two steps, I knew something wasn’t right.
“ … I knew instantly that ultimately I’m going to be missing some time.”
Though it may be a bit surprising to some that he opted for the draft, the Viera, FL native has decent upside and has the potential to be a quality NFL-caliber receiver. His six-foot-two, 180lb frame helped him snatch several 50-50 balls over smaller cornerbacks throughout his UCF career. According to Rotoworld, he's projected to go on day 3 of the draft, earning a fifth-round grade from Pro Football Network draft analyst Tony Pauline.