After watching the limited amount of available Jermaine Eskridge film, it’s safe to say that he’s is a Nickel player. Remember, Nickel refers to when evaluating film, a select few players only require 5 plays in order to pass judgment. It’s hard to fathom that he’s only going into his sophomore year at Tampa’s Jefferson High School.
His freshman year tape mainly showed Eskridge at tight end, linebacker, receiver, and defensive end. He even lined up at defensive tackle on more than one occasion. His permanent home will be at receiver. At 6’3″ 185 lbs., there’s going to be more growth and weight gain. Regardless if that happens or not, this is a big, big time player that I wouldn’t be shocked if he’s not a nationally-rated Top 5 player in 2018.
Recent 16 and 17 commitments served as warning shots that this is not your daddy’s Wildcats. Eskridge’s commitment is a college football carpet bombing.
When assessing underclassmen, I never focus on technique. That will come with experience. But Jermaine’s obvious and elite athletic ability was evident. He was extremely active on defense by causing turnovers, rushing the passer, and pretty much anything else he wanted to do. You see, football evaluation is not rocket science. While watching Eskridge, I saw an elite athlete that can run, jump, doesn’t shy away from contact, and able to perform football actions that are well beyond his age or instruction. Due to his tape not featuring him at receiver, evaluation details were vague. But it was more than obvious, the game comes easy to Jermaine.
When I was evaluating the sophomore to be, I couldn’t help to remember seeing Randy Moss in the ESPN 30 for 30, “Rand University.” I’m not comparing Eskridge to Randy Moss. Let’s get that straight. But much like it was for Randy, Jermaine will be the best overall athlete on the football field, no matter where he plays or who he plays against.
Oh yeah, YAHTZEE!
The fight to retain Eskridge’s commitment will last for three long years and most likely turn nasty. Many, many other suitors will follow. Keeping Florida in-state coaches away won’t happen. Regardless of geographical location, opposing coaches won’t simply give up after his Kentucky commitment. Having Mac Jones in his ear will help. UK is in uncharted waters. I can’t remember a rising sophomore ever committing to the football Wildcats. I also can’t remember watching a more physically gifted football player at his age.