Thompson Thinks Receivers are Ready

It was one of the very few question marks on a team that returned just about everyone from the national championship in 2008. This 2009 Gator squad has to replace two NFL players at receiver and has a lot of bodies, but not many proven players to do so. According to sophomore receiver Deonte Thompson, he and his troops are ready to prove the doubters.

Florida Head Coach Urban Meyer has consistently praised his top four receivers this year. Deonte Thompson, Riley Cooper, David Nelson, and Brandon James have evidently played at a high level throughout the fall. Thompson reflected the same thoughts on Wednesday.

"I feel good about the whole receiver group right now," Thompson said. "We are looking for some of the younger guys to step up, but from the top guys Me, Riley, B. James, and David Nelson we are doing pretty well."

For Thompson it was an adjustment when he first arrived at Florida just like it is for a lot of players that show up on campus. Florida recruits the best from the high school ranks and most of the kids that sign with the Gators, are the elite players at their school, district, or state level. Thompson remembers coming in and thinking it was going to be easy.

"It is hard, just from coming in as all-world," Thompson said. "You get here and the guy to the right is just as good as you. Then…the whole speed of the game, and you have to learn to play at that level. Some guys pick it up quick and other guys don't pick it up as quick. That is the main adjustment."

Meyer said on Tuesday that every receiver that has signed with Florida at some point has thought about transferring or quitting. Only two have in five years. For Thompson, there were some rough times, but he was never headed anywhere else.

"I was a Florida fan and I loved Florida," Thompson said. "I was going to stick it out."

Now there are no worries and Deonte Thompson hits the field ready to run full throttle. Not afraid to tell anyone he is the fastest Gator on the field, full throttle from Thompson should send fear down the spines of the opposing defense.

"You play a lot faster and with confidence," Thompson said. "When you learn the offense you play so much faster. When you come in as a freshman, everything is so fast, you are thinking, nervous, and scared to mess up. When you get the offense down, you just play fluid and everything just goes right."

Now he is at the place he always thought he would be, starting at the X in a high powered offense and ready to make a difference for a national championship contender.

"I really came here to play the X, Murphy's position," Thompson said. "That is what they have been telling me since I came here."

Replacing Murphy is no sweat. He says there is no burden to try and live up to with the speedy Murphy.

"Not really," Thompson said about a heavy weight on his shoulders. "It is something I have been waiting on and I feel like I am the man for the job."

With all the confidence, Thompson is ready to do his part in winning a championship and getting he season under way.

"I am just ready to play and want to get some of the stress out from the offseason," he said.

And what does he want to hit on when he gets a chance.

"The speed post," he said. "I hit it every time, I just love running the speed post."

With confidence and his 4.28 speed in the 40, it is easy for his quarterbacks to love the speed post too.


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