Washington football: Is Gordon poised to break out in 2020?

Washington football has been hyping the local star on social media, will the sophomore live up to it?

Washington football’s fans and coaching staff know it well, Kyler Gordon is a freak athlete. The local star out of Archbishop Murphy is the country’s most exciting dime corner, and the hype around him is building.

It all started when Pro Football Focus’ Mike Renner named Gordon among his top 100 prospects for the 2021 NFL Draft. Renner, who ranked Gordon 100th, noted his athleticism and that he’s still a raw prospect at corner.

That hype continued to build when The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman included him on his annual “Freaks” list, where he goes in-depth on some of college football’s most outstanding athletes. Feldman talks about Gordon’s vertical jump (42.5 inches), along with his unbelievable three-cone (6.52 seconds) and pro agility (3.87 seconds) times. It’s worth noting that the latter two times would’ve been the best at the 2020 NFL Combine, while his vertical would’ve been second-best.

Now, we can’t go a day on social media without seeing an insane, athletic play by Gordon at practice.

Now, will all this hype translate into on-field production? Gordon is pencilled in to open the season as Washington’s dime corner, and barring injury it might be tough to see him move up the depth chart this season. With two seniors in Elijah Molden and Keith Taylor, and freshman All-American Trent McDuffie in front of him, barring injuries or an air raid offense, it’s unlikely that we see Gordon in the starting lineup much this year.

Lucky for him, head coach Jimmy Lake loves to rotate his defensive backs, and Gordon will get a chance to prove himself every week. The Huskies consistently roll out packages with six or seven defensive backs, so snaps will not be hard to come by for the sophomore.

Gordon’s biggest impact in 2020 might be on special teams. Lake discussed on the Jimmy Lake Show that he hasn’t named a punt returner yet, and that it could be McDuffie. Given the impact he had in his first season, this seems highly unlikely, and there’s a serious chance the coaching staff could go with Gordon instead. He has the change of direction and short-area quickness to make the first man miss, along with the long speed to finish off those long returns.

Gordon is an exceptional talent who’s only scratching the surface of what he can do, and he’s in the best place possible to maximize his potential.