Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Versatile Jordan Reed emerges as Florida Gators' top option at tight end

GAINESVILLE — Jordan Reed's video collection over the past summer expanded to include any and all things related to Charlie Weis before he arrived in Gainesville.

The Florida quarterback turned tight end wanted to know all he could about the offensive system he was stepping into with new offensive coordinator Weis and the former tight ends he has so famously made successful.

After studying film of the New England Patriots, Notre Dame and the Kansas City Chiefs, Reed is pumped about his potential role in Florida's offense this season.

"From the past he uses tight ends a lot, so I'm pretty excited about that," Reed said. "Hopefully he'll use me like he's used those other guys. The guy from Kansas City, the last tight end he had, was pretty good. And I feel like I can do some of the same things he could do."

Reid could be a breakout star in a Gator offense desperately needing one. The 6-foot-3, 240-pound redshirt sophomore played 12 games with four starts last season, alternating in the Gators' much-maligned three quarterback system. He was 26-of-46 passing for 252 yards and three touchdowns, caught six passes for 79 yards and a touchdown and rushed 77 times for 328 yards and five TDs.

After having spent the past eight months focusing on tight end, Reed believes he's finally about to come into his own there.

"It's been much easier than last year," Reed said. "I only have to learn one position now, so I like it a lot. Definitely, I'm real comfortable."

Reed is expected to figure prominently in Weis' two tight-end set, which Gator players say has been efficient in camp.

"Jordan Reed is definitely a mismatch," UF quarterback John Brantley said. "Especially at the tight end position, they usually match him up with a linebacker some. And with his speed and size, that's a big mismatch sometimes. We're definitely looking forward to seeing it (in a game)."

Athleticism is the word teammates and coaches consistently use to describe Reed. He led New London (Conn.) High School to an undefeated season in 2007 and in 2008 was a finalist for the Joe Montana high school quarterback of the year award.

But when Florida's new coaching staff sat down with Reed to talk about his future?

"I chose to be a tight end," he said. "They asked me which one I wanted to play, and I told them I'd rather play tight end. I just felt like I could go further playing tight end than quarterback."

But his versatility will still be used. He's practicing at the wildcat position, and coach Will Muschamp said Reed is in line to become the No. 2 punt returner behind Chris Rainey.

"We're talking about a guy his size catching it and getting vertical on a gunner is pretty exciting," Muschamp said. "It's gone well. We put him back there and feel comfortable about it. He has great ball judgment and catches the ball extremely well. As we progress through, we'll see how much he can do with this."

Though he's no longer up for the quarterback job, Reed said having played the position pays dividends in his new role.

"It makes it much easier knowing who's covering me and how to get open," Reed said. "That's helped me a lot, learning to read coverages, seeing how the safeties rotate, and it makes it easier for me to get open and find out where the zones are and things like that. I feel like I've worked hard this offseason with my routes and blocking, so I think I'm going to help the team out a lot."

Antonya English can be reached at Follow her coverage at

Versatile Jordan Reed emerges as Florida Gators' top option at tight end 08/19/11 [Last modified: Friday, August 19, 2011 8:43pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs journal: Kicker Nick Folk has up and downs against Jaguars


    JACKSONVILLE — If the Bucs had hoped for a drama-free night in their kicking game, they'll have to wait another week.

    Bucs kicker Nick Folk celebrates one of his two made field goals against the Jaguars, but he also misses a field goal and has an extra point blocked.
  2. Bucs top Jaguars behind strong first half



    There is a reason why the air in Tampa Bay is filled with playoff talk. If Thursday night's 12-8 Bucs preseason win over the Jaguars is any indication, it's also going to be filled with footballs thrown by quarterback Jameis Winston.

    Doug Martin gets the Bucs’ only touchdown  on a 2-yard run, squeaking past linebacker Telvin Smith in the first quarter. He has five carries for 30 yards.
  3. Rays journal: Archer has strong outing, with two mistakes

    The Heater

    TORONTO — Two pitches RHP Chris Archer didn't execute are the ones that stood out Thursday as Josh Donaldson hit them out of the park. But the two solo home runs aside, Archer turned in a sterling outing that went atop the pile of good pitching the Rays keep wasting.

    Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) works during the first inning. [Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP]
  4. Tim Tebow continues wowing fans as he wraps up bay area games


    CLEARWATER — Tracey Fritzinger has seen Tim Tebow play baseball a few times this year. The 40-year-old St. Petersburg resident went to two of his games against the Tampa Yankees, along with Joy, her little sister from Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.

    St. Lucie Mets outfielder Tim Tebow, middle, hangs out in the dugout during Thursday night’s game against the Clearwater Threshers at Spectrum Field, the last of St. Lucie’s eight-day trip to the Tampa Bay area.
  5. Rays vs. Mariners, 7:10 Friday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Mariners

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun, 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Austin Pruitt (50) in the dugout during the ninth inning of the game between the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays on Opening Day at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, April 2, 2017. The Tampa Bay Rays beat the New York Yankees 7-3.