Summer Top 50 - No. 19 Rickey Jefferson

Coming in at No. 19 on TSD's top 50 countdown of LSU players is a junior safety that made waves when given chances in 2014.

Because everyone loves to rank things, and because summer is the best time to argue and debate, TSD is spending the coming weeks through the end of July rolling out its top 50 LSU football players for the coming season.

Many are seasoned veterans and a select few are new to the roster, but all 50 Tigers figure to make an impact on the gridiron in 2015.

So we hope you enjoy this list, updated once each weekday and compiled by the TSD staff of Ben Love and Hunter Paniagua (who, naturally, had disagreements of their own along the way).

Today the countdown reaches a veteran safety at No. 19, physical junior Rickey Jefferson.

REASON FOR OPTIMISM


Jordan's little brother has made a name for himself, turning into a heckuva player at LSU, especially considering he's switched sides of the ball from high school. Rickey Jefferson (6-0, 204) was primarily a receiver while at Destrehan, really only playing defensively in a blitz-heavy package he once told TSD was called "Seal Team Six."

Now he's a full-time safety in Baton Rouge, but Jefferson is still bringing a physical presence. He played in seven games as a freshman, starting once versus Arkansas, compiling six tackles and two pass breakups. A season ago his role grew as a sophomore, playing in the back as a safety in nickel and dime situations.

In 2014 he played in all 13 games, registering 23 tackles, 1.5 for loss, and tied for the team lead with two interceptions. The production has been there for Jefferson. Now, with Jalen Mills and Jamal Adams slated to start in the back, it's merely a question of how much time position coach Corey Raymond can carve out for Jefferson. Here's guessing he'll be a regular in sub-packages when Mills slides down into the box.

STILL LEFT TO PROVE


There aren't many places in the starting 22 where LSU feels more solidified than at safety with Mills, a four-year starter, and Adams, a precocious sophomore billed as the next coming for DBU. So for Jefferson there's definite competition, throwing into the mix a veteran and one-time starter in Corey Thompson as well.

He also probably isn't as complete a safety as some of the other options, making him most likely to play in nickel and dime situations. Under John Chavis' watch that still guaranteed a good bit of playing time. It's yet to be seen how often new coordinator Kevin Steele will go with five- and six-DB sets. For Jefferson to merit more time, he'll have to progress more in his coverage abilities and instincts.





Tiger Blitz Top Stories