Boston College has had no shortage of big players in recent history. Whether it was Hunter Long, Harold Landry, Chris Lindstrom or Luke Kuechly, the Eagles have had big names that have gone on to big things at the collegiate and pro level. Next year we already know some of the big names: quarterback Phil Jurkovec, the offensive line, and Zay Flowers will be players to watch. But who are some future stars in the making? Let's investigate.
Josh DeBerry - Defensive Back
If there was one group that was criminally under appreciated in 2020 it was the defensive back group. Now they certainly were not perfect, but you saw great growth out of the crew, especially when the front seven was able to get pressure on the quarterback. One of the most impressive out of the group was Josh DeBerry. Ranked the #2 defender on the team by Pro Football Focus and #2 defensive back in coverage, DeBerry showed a real knack in coverage, and along with Brandon Sebastian should become a very strong tandem in the backfield.
Jaelen Gill - Wide Receiver
It was a bit of an uneven season for the Ohio State transfer, who finished the season with 29 catches for 435 yards and a touchdown. But what stuck out was his explosiveness. Gill had a handful of big catches that he was able to use his elite speed and elusiveness to turn into explosive plays. As he continues to find his role in this offense his role will grow and his big play ability will be there for Frank Cignetti and this offense.
Isaiah Graham-Mobley - Linebacker
The talent is there, the question will be can Graham-Mobley stay healthy enough to make a difference all season. In 2020, a season he played just three games but ranked the 4th most effective pass rusher per Pro Football Focus. Boston College clearly has a big need for effective linebackers to step up and fill the roles of Isaiah McDuffie and Max Richardson.
Deon Jones - Defensive Back
One of the top defensive backs in 2020, Jones didn't get the accolades that he deserved. He was the glue in the back half of the secondary, and was a consistently good tackler and solid in coverage. Banged up a few times and missing two and a half games, a healthy Jones in this system could be set to really explode in 2021.
David Bailey - Running Back
2020 was a disappointing year for the junior running back. His rushing yards per carry dropped a yard and a half and he didn't show much of the explosiveness we saw in 2019. The talent is still there, as he showed moments like when he carried the team against Syracuse. Could be naivety, but he is going to improve in 2021. With improved blocking in front of him, Frank Cignetti's goal this offseason should be figuring out how to get the running game going more consistently. If he can do that, look for Bailey to break out...again.
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