Florida Gators defensive coordinator Geoff Collins took the podium on Wednesday to give an update on the defense as the Gators head into fall camp.
Collins covered several subjects, including Nick Washington’s role heading into this season and the standard of defense that is set at Florida.
GC brings you a notebook on what Collins said.
• Nick Washington had a good offseason and his progression has been great. Collins says Washington knows the defense inside and out.
• He also said Washington is one of the fittest guys on the team and there is no worry about him being tired going from special teams to defense throughout the game.
• With so much attention on Jalen Tabor, Quincy Wilson has been overlooked. He works hard and big things are expected from him.
• Maye coming back for his senior season is huge.
• Caleb Brantley could be as dominant as of a defensive tackle as anyone in the country. He has really improved his technique and he is confident.
• Collins said Cece Jefferson relied on his athletic ability alone too much last season and needs to make plays in the framework of the defense. He will be moving in an out like Bullard. Collins believes Jefferson can be a force and his effort and technique are there.
• Collins said Jordan Sherit knows the defense and can play any position across the front four.
• Collins said there were times last season where the Gators arguably had the top three corners in the country, in Vernon Hargreaves III, Jalen Tabor, and Quincy Wilson.
• Collins said Bryan Cox Jr. and Jordan Sherit are the hardest working defensive players he’s ever had.
• Anzalone makes people around him better, according to Collins. He is intelligent, has high character, wants to win, and cares about his teammates. Anzalone has great respect from the players and coaches.
• Collins said he recently called Jarrad Davis’ mom to rave about his character. He said his drive and character separate him from the rest.
• The progression of the defense has been positive.
• Collins said there is a standard for how defense is played at the University of Florida.
• There are six players from last years’ defense playing in the NFL.
• Defensive players need to develop leadership ability.
• Collins said you need to have at least 18 guys who can roll in and play at a high level.
• Coach Mac has built a “next man up” theme.
• Collins said they need to build on where they were last year. The players have embraced that and have high standards.
• Collins said the defense has a lot of pride, an edge, and a certain swagger.
• Everyone has love and belief in McElwain. Collins said the buy-in factor is at an all-time high.
• Players follow the leaders, like Davis and Anzalone.
• Collins said they talk about playing above the line a lot. Players are fighting for reps every day whether they are an All-American or a freshman.