ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr., a long-time veteran of the NFL Draft, seemed to think so.
"Spikes surprised me by going back," Kiper said on Wednesday.
"I thought had he come out, he was the No. 1 middle linebacker in this draft. They moved him around, they got him outside in pass-rush situations. The big thing with him was what kind of speed he was going to show."
"If he ran well enough and showed the kind of speed you need to be an early-to-mid first rounder, I think he would have been in that discussion at 10 to 20 and I think he would have been the top middle linebacker in the draft. So that one did surprise me. Of all the juniors that went back, Spikes was probably one of the two or three that surprised me most."
Kiper questioned whether staying at Florida for another year would even help his draft status.
"The question is going to be the same as it was (his speed)," Kiper said.
"I don’t know if he’s going to improve that much by going back. We don’t know what juniors are going out next year and all of that, so it’s hard to really say. But he would have been, I think, in the discussion for between pick 10 and pick 20."
Actually, Spikes may have other reasons. He is close friends with Denver Broncos defensive end Jarvis Moss, a first-round pick a year ago. Spikes and Moss, who left UF as a junior, talked numerous times about leaving early for the pros. Moss suggested he stay in school and enjoy college life.
The NFL Draft is on April 25.
Kiper also discussed Gator receiver Percy Harvin, who left his name in the draft and is a certain first round pick. He said Harvin, a hybrid who played both running back and receiver in college, is going to have to learn the wide out position in the NFL.
"You can utilize him in a lot of ways," Kiper said.
"I think he’s got a lot of Reggie Bush in him in terms of the way he plays the game and how explosive he is. I think he’s a touchdown waiting to happen. He’s a scoreboard changer all the way. I like Percy Harvin a lot. I just think there are some issues size-wise with him, he does a lot of things after the catch, which means he exposes himself to a lot of hits."
"Durability is a concern with him. But I think he can be a valuable entity if you utilize him properly. And I think he’s probably a mid-first round pick."
Kiper, who has Harvin going in the middle of the first round. also feels Harvin's history of getting hurt isn't a factor.
"Injuries are a part of football," Kiper said.
"Size and injuries, for guys like Percy Harvin, the way he catches the ball and what he's asked to do after the catch, it's a concern. But is it going to affect where he goes in the draft? I don't think so."