Texas LB Malik Jefferson heading to the NFL

Malik Jefferson had 110 tackles and four sacks in 2017, including this sack of Jacob Park. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images)

Texas linebacker Malik Jefferson is skipping his senior season and heading to the NFL.

Jefferson’s decision is no surprise. Arguably Big 12’s best defensive player, Jefferson had 110 total tackles, 10 tackles for loss and four sacks in 2017. He was the only Texas player to top 100 tackles and the team’s second-leading tackler, DeShon Elliott, had 63 tackles.

Elliott previously said he was heading to the NFL draft. Elliott skipped Texas’ bowl game win over Missouri because of his pro aspirations. Jefferson didn’t play either, though he was also dealing with an injury.

Jefferson was the Big 12’s co-defensive player of the year along with Oklahoma’s Ogbonnia Okoronkwo.

Jefferson had 62 tackles and 5.5 sacks as a sophomore in 2016. He emerged as a dynamic defensive playmaker as soon as he put on a Texas uniform with 61 tackles his freshman season.

He announced his decision to head to the NFL in a video for the Players Tribune. The former five-star recruit is going to be a very early pick in the draft.

In addition to Jefferson and Elliott, DB Holton Hill, OL Connor Williams and P Michael Dickson are leaving school early for the NFL. Dickson was the MVP of the Texas Bowl after an incredible punting performance against the Tigers.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!