Deangelo Gibbs may be needed primarily at safety during the beginning of his college career. His heart, however, is shared between two positions.
Since Gibbs was a pee-wee football standout, Gibbs has played on both sides of the ball. All the way through his high school football career, which culminated with Grayson during his senior season, Gibbs played defensive back and wide receiver.
Considered an athlete by some recruiting experts, Gibbs isn’t someone who can matter-of-factly be locked into just one position.
“See, I’ve been playing both sides my entire life, literally from a little kid to high school, which is kind of hard to decipher where my heart is,” Gibbs said. “My heart is at both positions. I feel I can implement a little bit of both receiver and DB for them.”
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That led to a question as to whether conversations have taken place for Gibbs to possibly get some receiver reps.
Perhaps to the surprise of some, that is something Gibbs has spoken to at least one of Georgia’s coaches about.
“I doubt they’ll let me go through the whole season without getting a few touches in my hands,” Gibbs said. “(Offensive coordinator Jim) Chaney’s come up to me like, ‘Whenever you’re ready, get some throws in with Jacob.’ I’m staying after some days, catching the ball with Jacob, doing some DB drills — kind of doing both.”
But using Gibbs as a multipurpose weapon on both sides probably won’t be on the coaching staff’s mind in the immediate future. Gibbs understands he would need to master the defense first before getting a look on offense.
At the present time, head coach Kirby Smart said Georgia needs to upgrade the defensive backfield, which may also prevent Chaney from being able to get a closer look at Gibbs with his unit.
“I wouldn’t consider that right now because we’ve got to get better on defense, first and foremost,” Smart said. “Just because people are coming back doesn’t mean you can’t improve. We certainly think (this year’s signees) can make us better. We don’t have everybody back.”
Still, if Gibbs can offer an added threat as an offensive gadget Georgia will more than likely entertain the idea. The Bulldogs are in a bind after losing their 2016 leading receiver in Isaiah McKenzie, who elected to bypass his final year of eligibility for the NFL draft. Any help Georgia can get in filling that void will be needed.
But Gibbs is a defensive back first and foremost and is a big believer in the class Georgia just inked. Before National Signing Day, the Bulldogs had Gibbs, safety Richard LeCounte, cornerback Tray Bishop and cornerback William Poole in the fold. On Wednesday, Georgia added cornerbacks Ameer Speed, Eric Stokes and Latavious Brini, all of whom are 6-foot-1 or taller.
Gibbs is impressed by Georgia’s haul and believes big things can happen in the back end.
“How can you get any better? I really do believe we have one of the defensive back recruiting classes in the nation,” Gibbs said. “It’s stacked. We all talk, we all get together. We say we can make this thing happen, we can make it work. We just need to work hard, put in the effort and time, and do more. We really think we have something special coming on.”