2017 Season Countdown: #76 Donovan Jeter

2017 Season Countdown: #76 Donovan Jeter


June 7, 2017

Donovan Jeter (image via 247 Sports)

Name: Donovan Jeter
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 260 lbs.
High school: Beaver Falls (PA) Beaver Falls
Position: Defensive end
Class: Freshman
Jersey number: #95
Last year: Jeter was a senior in high school. He made 76 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, 3 pass breakups, and 1 fumble recovery.
TTB Rating: 78

Jeter enrolled early this past January, and he made a bit of a splash during spring practices. He earned some positive reviews, and he played a good deal in the spring game. Despite my previous assertions that he looked like a future defensive tackle, he played defensive end and looked rather svelte. I suspect that he will continue to bulk up, and I still think there’s a good chance that he will end up as a 3-tech defensive tackle. However, for now he appears to be a depth player on the edge. I don’t think he’s strong enough to hold up at the point of attack, and he doesn’t offer a great pass rush right now. He may play as a developmental guy this season, but I don’t think he will have a great impact on the field.

Prediction: Backup defensive end

11 comments

  1. Painter Smurf
    Comments: 263
    Joined: 8/12/2015
    Painter Smurf
    Jun 07, 2017 at 10:24 PM

    Can’t remember watching Jeter’s HS film, but I liked his spring scrimmage, especially for an undersized, early enrollee. Looks like he has natural DL skills to me. Mattison had other options when he went all in on Jeter’s recruitment, and it sounds like the coaches made a good call there based on early reviews.

    They won’t need him this fall barring injury, but guessing that Jeter won’t take too long to become a “rotational” level player. I think Jeter mentioned in an interview that he is hitting the weights for the first time in earnest in Ann Arbor, so there is upside there.

  2. Avatar
    Comments: 1357
    Joined: 8/13/2015
    Roanman
    Jun 08, 2017 at 7:11 AM

    When Thunder first said that he thought Jeter was going to grow into a three tech, i had to go back and look because my initial thought on Jeter was that he was a real nice player, but how many weak side defensive ends do we really need around here. This kid is so naturally lean, I’m still wondering if they can get him to 285 … ever … not just in two years.

    Still, he’s a very nice big athlete with a very nice feel for playing defense. I think he’s going to play a lot for us. I also think that he ends up being a high 70s/low 80s guy in Thunder’s system ….. rotating with Villain on the weak side.

    • Thunder
      Comments: 3849
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Jun 08, 2017 at 8:48 AM

      I think it’s rare that you see any defensive end prospect come in with a fully developed musculature. Most of these guys are so long and lean that their muscles can’t keep up with their upward growth. Unless you’re already a DT-sized defensive end (like Chris Wormley or Rashan Gary), you’re bound to add at least 20 lbs. of muscle. We’ve seen that with Taco Charlton, Brennen Beyer, Frank Clark, etc. I don’t think there’s any doubt they can get him to 285 at some point, if they want to do so. Maybe they’ll be fine with him as a 275 lb. defensive end, but he doesn’t have the edge rush ability to be a lightweight, IMO.

      • Painter Smurf
        Comments: 263
        Joined: 8/12/2015
        Painter Smurf
        Jun 08, 2017 at 9:54 AM

        It is always interesting to see how these DE types fill out, and that has such a big impact on their careers. Someone like Brennan Beyer could have been a stud 5 tech, but he just could not hold more than 260 lbs. Godin is another guy who probably would have been an NFL prospect if he could have filled out a little more. Then you have guys like Wormley and Clark who put on 40 lbs of good weight like it is nothing. I think if Jeter can get into the 275 lbs range, that will give the coaches some different options for using him.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Jun 08, 2017 at 12:34 PM

        Wormley added 30-50 pounds from HS to his senior year. When he committed some sites even had him at 225 (which was probably an error) but 250-260 was the consensus. Then he got listed at 270 by most of the sites after his HS senior year.

        I would agree that the typical DL recruit is going to pack on 20-40 pounds.

  3. Lanknows
    Comments: 6285
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Jun 08, 2017 at 12:39 PM

    For projecting the freshman DL, the big domino is Solomon. If he’s ready to contribute that sets us up well along the rest of the line and there’ll probably be several red-shirts. If not, then you might have to do some shuffling if Hudson and Paea also aren’t ready.

    Hurst and Dwumfour may play more nose. Gary may play more 3-tech. Etc.

    An injury to Mone/Hurst/Dwumfour could have a similar impact.

    In my mind, Jeter’s positive spring and EE status gives him a leg up on some of the other guys, even though his size probably limits him to SDE.

    Then again…. Taco Charlton got DT snaps as a true freshman. Jeter’s bigger and more experienced at the same point.

    • Painter Smurf
      Comments: 263
      Joined: 8/12/2015
      Painter Smurf
      Jun 08, 2017 at 2:38 PM

      Solomon will be ready for back-up snaps. The physical tools are all there right out of the box. Bigger concern as you point out is Mone getting through a season without a major injury, and to a lesser extent Dwumfor being fully healthy. Bummer that he missed a lot of spring practice.

      The more I think about it, I am expecting CMH, DIB, Paea, and Paye to all redshirt. Guessing Villain, Solomon, Hudson and Jeter play.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Jun 08, 2017 at 8:31 PM

        I would predict the same 4/4 split if forced to pick, but would have low confidence in it being right.

  4. Lanknows
    Comments: 6285
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Jun 08, 2017 at 8:40 PM

    It’s kind of crazy that Michigan’s backup 11 on D could be all freshman.

    The only non-freshman who seem to be locked into key backup roles are Glasgow and Watson.

    A couple injuries to the right/wrong guys and the backups could be:

    DL: Kemp / Solomon / Dwumfour / Villain

    LB: Anthony / Singleton

    S: Woods / Hawkins / JKP (or Uche)

    CB: Thomas / St. Juste

    This is going to be a VERY young defense even though the starters won’t look too unusual.

  5. Painter Smurf
    Comments: 263
    Joined: 8/12/2015
    Painter Smurf
    Jun 20, 2017 at 6:12 AM

    Don Brown heaped more unsolicited praise on Jeter last week. Said he is up to 280 lbs, very impressed with his early development. Seemed to imply that he had a better spring than Carlo Kemp, but that is reading between the lines. I think we can chalk Jeter up as a guy who will play this fall.

    • Thunder
      Comments: 3849
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Jun 20, 2017 at 11:34 AM

      He also seemed to imply that he’ll probably end up at 3-tech.

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