It’s hard to truly buy in to the hype of a top-level college football recruit. Sure it’s nice to look at their high school achievements and wonder how much more they can improve and eventually help your program succeed. But, really, you never truly have an indication of what someone can be until they’ve stepped on the field in a game-type situation.
While not an actual regular season contest, Florida State Seminoles redshirt freshman QB Jameis Winston took to the field in Doak Campbell Stadium today in the annual Garnet and Gold spring game. And, in his first public display, he made it known exactly what he can do when he is put in a game-type situation–steal the show.
Winston in fact did leave the fans in awe on Saturday. Finishing the game 12-for-15 for 202 yards, the freshman showed incredible poise and confidence in running the FSU offense. With former Florida State Heisman winning QB Charlie Ward in attendance, the phenom showed fans that he may indeed have the skill set to once again let them enjoy a 1993-like season again some time soon.
Dropping back on his first play from scrimmage, Winston fired a 58-yard touchdown strike to David Tyrrell. It was almost as if he had heard the skepticism of some folks in regards to his ability, and decided to silence them immediately.
Also, to make the feat that much more impressive, he zipped that pass right past All-American defensive back Lamarcus Joyner. Not only was he wowing the fans in attendance, he was leaving the jaws of his teammates on the floor as well.
Of being beaten on the pass play, Joyner proclaimed, “He’s a smart kid. I wasn’t worried about the guy I was covering and he recognized that and took advantage of that like he’s supposed to.”
No, Lamarcus. You see, the thing is, a redshirt freshman generally isn’t supposed to be able to recognize defensive back tendencies this early in his development. At this stage, they’re generally more concerned with chemistry with the receivers and making the basic reads. The ability to exploit an accomplished veteran defensive back isn’t even a skill that some four-year starting QBs develop, much less a freshman.
Winston’s ability to excel at that aspect of quarterbacking this early is a scary, scary thought.
While the performances of the other two candidates involved in the three-way quarterback duel, Clint Trickett and Jacob Coker, weren’t terrible by any means, Winston certainly separated himself as best he possibly could.
Either way, today’s performance by Jameis Winston was certainly cause for the young man to take in a little deserved celebration for himself.
And, he did. By leaving Doak Campbell Stadium and suiting up to bat 7th for the Seminoles’ baseball team later in the night.