Jay-nard Bostwick is still relatively unknown.
Sure, the four-star defensive tackle is highly rated, and scouts rave about him. But, to many Gators, his recruitment flew well under the radar, didn’t cause any drama, and ultimately, the Florida faithful didn’t start to learn his name or watch his film until after he signed his National Letter of Intent on Feb. 6.
The Gators grabbed the 6-foot-4, 280-pound Port St. Lucie target over Alabama and Miami and desperately needed him after the departure of senior Omar Hunter and junior Sharrif Floyd.
On paper, Bostwick is a big body, who competed against great talent and provides much needed depth for the Gators along the offensive line. However, it isn’t until you watch his video that your realize how great he can be as a 1-technique, 3-technique, or 5-technique defensive tackle.
After an initial, perfunctory glance at his video you can tell Bostwick is physical, strong, and has great technique, which compensates for his mediocre initial burst. His height at 6-foot-4 is a bit taller than most defensive tackles, which allows him to gain great leverage that a smaller defensive tackle may struggle to gain. That initial leverage allows Bostwick to quickly move the guard/center and attack the gap. After he attacks the gap, Bostwick has great tackling skills and hits hard.
Obviously, with that size he is going to hit hard, but his technique and driving the ball carrier into the ground is something you don’t always see in high school. Often times in high school defensive tackle tapes, you will see the stronger tackle simply pummel the ball carrier or wrap-up low in a diving tackle (Bostwick does dive a bit more than you would like to see, but that is coachable.)
At the same time, Bostwick moves really well for his size. In high school, Bostwick lined-up inside and outside on the line, which benefited his footwork. He does a great job moving constantly moving his feet forward, as well as, has great lateral movement. Coupling his footwork with his speed, and you have a defensive tackle that has great brute strength, but is also versatile in the Gators 3-4 defense.
Although Bostwick is not ranked as highly as Caleb Brantley, he will likely have a better career. He is stronger, has better technique and seems to have a better motor. Do not be surprised if Bostwick is starting for the Gators by his sophomore year.