FORT MYERS, Fla.- WINK News was the only station there as more than 50 people, family and friends, packed Sammy Watkins childhood home in Fort Myers tonight. And their reaction is priceless as the man they call "Bud" was picked fourth overall.
The former South Fort Myers High grad and Clemson Tiger is headed north to Buffalo, New York. Watkins was the highest-rated wide receiver entering the draft. On Thursday night, WINK News was there with his family and it was a packed house. They all agreed he's a good kid, who has always taken care of his family and they can't wait to see him take that next step and play professional football.
"We're so proud, we're so proud. We knew, he said he was gonna do it. I knew he's gonna make it because he's humble. He's a good boy, only thing I hate is granddaddy wasn't here to see this day."
Watkins isn't the only Southwest Florida football star we're keeping an eye on tonight. Naples High grad and Ohio State Buckeye, Carlos Hyde, also waiting for his name to be called in this year's draft. His former coaches tell WINK News, the running back was spending the day on the boat, fishing in the Gulf of Mexico with some of his high school teammates.
"And they were gonna get away from all the hoopla, distractions. And the potential and the excitement of being the first round or the disappointed all that's eliminated. He's been very well grounded. Carlos has always never forgotten where he came from."
Watkins is tied with running back Edgerrin James, from Immokalee, as the highest-drafted player ever from Southwest Florida. Right behind them, Deion Sanders.