The Washington Football team may boast the best secondary in the nation
The season has not started yet, but Washington Football fans already have cause for celebration. Celebration and congratulations. Congratulations to both safety Taylor Rapp and cornerback Byron Murphy, who were named to the AP All America first and second teams, respectively. But as amazing as both of these guys have been, they’re not why UW has the best secondary in America. It starts with defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake, and goes all the way to the guys on the field.
Jimmy Lake has proven time and again that he’s the best defensive backs coach in the country, and he was rewarded this year. He was promoted to co-defensive coordinator, and he’ll have an opportunity to call plays this season. Lake is an impressive recruiter, and helped turn a lot of “lower level” recruits into stars. For example, Rapp and Jordan Miller were both three star recruits out of high school. Before Miller broke his ankle in 2017, he was on his way to first team All Pac 12 and potentially All America honors. And in any conversation about the DBs, you can’t leave out Lake’s favorite player, Myles Bryant.
Bryant had the toughest part to play on the team last year, and he did it very well. He’s an undersized guy, listed at 5’8, 180, but oh man is he feisty. He’s an incredibly physical corner, who thrives on playing in the slot. He didn’t look the same last year as he was thrust into more duty on the outside when both Murphy and Miller went down. Bryant is much better between the hash marks, but was still able to hold his own most of the time. One of the craziest things about Bryant, is as good as he’s been, Elijah Molden is nipping at his heels. Molden has been excellent, as he won the coveted Husky “Best Hands” award during the spring practices. He’s also near the top to win it again during fall camp.
Molden isn’t the only person that gives the secondary depth though, as Keith Taylor has improved in leaps and bounds since last season. He also has a prototypical body for a corner, a long and lanky player that might remind Husky fans of Kevin King. And then of course there’s Austin Joyner, who was a touted recruit out of high school, but just has been overshadowed by guys like Murphy and Sidney Jones. According to Adam Jude, Joyner has been taking more snaps at safety, so the Huskies can find a way to get him on the field. Expect to see him in a similar role to what Ezekiel Turner played last season. The crazy part is, this isn’t the end of the depth either.
Washington Football incoming freshman are special too. They are led by Kyler Gordon, a four star recruit out of Everett’s Archbishop Murphy. He, along with Dominique Hampton and Julius Irvin have impressed Jimmy Lake during fall camp.
"“… we know athletically, these guys can play right now” Lake said, when asked about the freshman."
There’s just so much talent in front of them that they can’t play right away.
And the talent in front of them is insane. Byron Murphy is projected as a first round corner for his NFL Draft. Similarly safety Taylor Rapp projects as the first safety off the board. Jordan Miller could sneak his way into the top few rounds if he produces the way he did in 2017.
JoJo McIntosh will hit his way on to a team, and it’s hard to imagine someone won’t take a fifth or sixth round flier on him. All this talent and coaching can only add up to one thing, the best secondary in America. And in 2018, the country will realize that Washington is truly defensive back universty. “DBU“.