Over the next 86 days, GatorCountry will preview the players that make up the 2013 Florida Gators football team as we inch closer and closer to the season.
Each day we will count down using the player whose jersey number corresponds with how many days there are left until Florida kicks off against Toledo in the Swamp on August 31.
Today we take a look at sophomore wide receiver Raphael Andrades.
Andrades was a late signing day addition to the 2012 recruiting class. Andrades attended Lincoln high school in Tallahassee where he was a two sport star playing both baseball and football.
Andrades was lightly recruited in high school and chose to attend Florida over other scholarship offers from Arkansas, FIU, Illinois, Kentucky and Vanderbilt.
Andrades played in nine games as a freshman including three starts.
Andrades is a big, strong, physical receiver who earned early playing time due to his blocking ability. We’ve mentioned before the importance that Will Muschamp and the Florida coaching staff puts on wide receivers being able to block effectively and Andrades certainly did that as a freshman.
As a receiver, Andrades is physical at the line of scrimmage and is not easily jammed by defensive backs. He has good enough speed that he could be a player that can stretch the field but looks like he will fill more of a possession type of receiver role for Florida.
Andrades has strong hands and is a sound pass-catcher.
His route running leaves a lot to be desired. Andrades doesn’t run crisp routes and rounds off his routes too often. He needs to work on running crisp, precise routes and Florida will look to improve their passing game this season. Joker Phillips spoke about getting his receivers where they need to be on time and when a receiver rounds off his routes, it throws off the timing of his quarterback.
At times Andrades struggles to create separation. He got away with it in high school because of his size and physical ability but he won’t be able to do that consistently in the SEC. So working on creating separation from defensive backs is another area where Andrades needs to improve moving forward.
What to Expect
Andrades played a good amount as a freshman but with five receivers coming in the 2013 recruiting class, competition will be much stiffer this season.
Andrades spent most of the spring splitting time between baseball and football before ultimately deciding to stick with just football.
It is hard to predict what to expect from him until we see how the other freshmen receivers come into school and how they acclimate to college. Demarcus Robinson has already passed him up on the depth chart and players like Ahmad Fulwood, Alvin Bailey and Marquis Hawkins could also move ahead of him this fall.
Andrades will still get playing time because of how effective he can be as a blocker but it’s too early to tell if he will step up and become a bigger factor in the offense as a receiver.