We're featuring some of our HomeTeam 100 players, including our No. 79 player, Zephyrhills ATH Jaylen Pickett:
Bulldogs coach Reggie Roberts could see potential in the latest in the long line of Picketts when Jaylen saw action at Zephyrhills as a freshman. But for all of Pickett’s athleticism, he couldn’t really run.
“Now he actually runs the football,” Roberts said. “He’ll make somebody miss, and he has the speed to take it all the way.”
That was obvious in the spring game, when he rushed for 118 yards on only five carries and scored once in a 43-7 win over Ridgewood.
Pickett (6-0, 170), the son of former Zephyrhills standout Damien Pickett and a relative of Green Bay Packer DL Ryan Pickett, had a solid sophomore season. Playing out of position at tight end, he caught four touchdowns and racked up a team-high 457 yards, while rushing for 86 more yards and a score. Defensively, he was a focal point in the secondary on a 6-4 team that narrowly missed the playoffs.
“He carried us on defense,” Roberts said. “Him and (Devin) Brockington basically shut it down when we needed them to.”
Zephyrhills is shifting Pickett to wing back, where he’ll get more offensive touches on a team loaded with weapons like Brockington, Malik Mutcherson and Jordan Roberts.
With a breakout season, his coach expects Division I recruiters will take note.
“His expectations are through the roof,” Roberts said.