Chip Pushing Kermit Whitfield

January 19th, 2017
Kermit Whitfield hopes speed kills in the NFL.

Kermit Whitfield hopes speed kills in the NFL.

Once upon a time, it seemed Florida State had a true, scary weapon in Kermit Whitfield.

Though just 5-8, Whitfield was dangerous with ankle-breaking speed. Who could forget his game-changing kickoff return for a touchdown in the Seminoles national title game over Auburn?

Since, Joe can’t think of one splash play Whitfield made. But research shows Whitfield was second in receiving for Florida State as a junior in 2015 with 798 yards on 57 catches.

Whitfield fell off the map last season with only 395 yards receiving, part of the reason he finds himself trying to prove his worth in the East-West Shrine Game, which will be held Saturday at the Fruitdome in St. Petersburg.

Joe had a chance to catch up with Whitfield this week and asked him if it bothered him that many only remember him for his famous touchdown return.

“Hey, if they see me as a return guy, I will return,” Whitfield said after practice at Shorecrest High School in St. Petersburg. “Nobody mentions [the kickoff return against Auburn] to me and I really don’t look at those [receiving] numbers. I just start playing football and if the plays come to me they come to me. If they don’t, I still have to play fast.”

Whitfield averaged 36.4 yards a return as a freshman, 20.8 as a sophomore, 26.7 as a junior and 22 yards per kick return last season. As a high school track star out of Orlando, Whitfield was once clocked at 4.37 in the 40 and 10.21 in the 100-yard dash at Jones High School.

Whitfield’s short stature will clearly weigh heavily on some teams. He understands this and it hacks him off.

“Chip on my shoulder,” Whitfield told Joe. “I [need] to show [scouts and coaches] I can play football. No matter how big you are, if you can play football, you are good and they will find a spot for you.”

22 Responses to “Chip Pushing Kermit Whitfield”

  1. Guzzie Says:

    No thanks, we have enough undrafted type WRs, need to get serious about getting Winston some legitimate weapons, relying on Doug and Vincent should’ve been a wake up call, 9-7 with our top weapons underperforming and injured all year, imagine if the Bucs actually had talent and depth at some of ou positions

  2. Rrsrq Says:

    Stacey Coley from the U, not as fast but way more productive. Don’t sleep on the U players, once they get to the league, they usually produce better than they did in college. (Not saying that about Kayaa)

  3. BIG Z Says:

    Coley is a nice player, quietly had a nice year. Hurt early at UM. Has good upside. Probably third rounder.

  4. DallasBuc Says:

    Can we please get a legitimate threat to return kicks on this team?

  5. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    He is a legitimate return threat you clearly haven’t him Play. I say h3ll exactly what this team need two more Seminoles. Give a d@$! How it makes y’all feel. Go get’em Mr. Licht. Been calling this one for awhile.

  6. DallasBuc Says:

    Nosbos- I’m just asking for a return threat be it your FSU boy or anyone else that can get the job done. Tired of the revolving door of lousy at the return position. See what Hester did in the game against the Falcons last weekend? He single handedly kept them in the game and he is going to retire.

  7. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Dallas he is a return threat bro. Very similar to Seattle’s Tyler Lockett.

  8. Joeypoppems Says:

    I wouldnt mind drafting him Day 3. We need a return weapon

  9. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    That’s how I feel Pop I refrain from mentioning his name much because I know the thought of adding a Nole makes JBF crazy.

  10. DallasBuc Says:

    I believe you nosbos and I don’t care how it get done but that position has sucked for a long aas time

  11. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    I’m more concerned about brains and hands in our kickoff returner. Just checked the top K.O. returners from last year. Corderelle Patterson tops with 31.68 and one TD. Of the top 25 returners there were only six TD’s all year and one of them…our own Josh Huff…yeah Mr. Braindead!

    Kickoffs by definition are plays at our goal line. The GB returner pulled a Huff and almost cost the Pack that game against Dallas. After watching Huff perhaps lose one game and scare us in another I’ve seen enough. I do not want some sprint sensation back there who has no football savvy and questionable hands.

    I think we get more bang for the speed in a punt returner. I love Hump and he is dependable but he’s not a threat to take it to the house.

  12. MarineBucsFan Says:

    I truly am biased, Jones High School class of 99 and die hard FSU fan.

    Kermit Whitfield is the man! Get him day 3 as a returner. LOL

  13. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    Semper Fi Marine Buc!

  14. MarineBucsFan Says:

    Semper Fi

  15. BucFamous Says:

    Sorry, I’m a huge Nole, but Kermit is not what we need. He never lived up to his potential as a WR or a returner.

    He’ll always be remembered for the championship game, but he was only serviceable down the stretch.

  16. pick6 Says:

    if he falls into the undrafted ranks, i would bet that the Bucs will be his top choice if they come calling. Close to home, catching passes from his former QB, and competing for a spot on a team entering the offseason with only 2 WRs worth keeping and nobody worth keeping at returner.

  17. pick6 Says:

    not saying he’ll make it or be anything special, but coming to training camp as one of the bucs’ 90 guys (or a summer tryout player) seems worth a shot for both player and team

  18. Buc2015 Says:

    I’m with you BucFamous …. Nole fan here and I’m not very high on Kermit’s NFL prospects. Will always be loved for the title game KO return (which I witnessed in person!), but despite that never proved to be as dynamic in the return game as I thought he should have been. Speed is awesome for KO returners but to be elite you have to have an innate feel for lining up the blocks, when to cut, etc, and I don’t think Kermit has it (Cordarrelle Patterson has it in spades … a natural)

  19. Tom S. Says:

    If he gets drafted late it’s due to his return ability. He’s undersized and hard to use at WR and nowhere near the production of Lockett or other undersized WR’s who have come out in recent years.

    It’s not like FSU’s WR’s have been very good since Rashad Greene and Co graduated.

  20. Dreambig Says:

    One play does not a super star make. I have watched every Fla State game for the last 6 years and I struggled to remember who Whitfield was. Sure bring him in and see what he has but this is a reach.

  21. Dreambig Says:

    My guess is that he is not NFL quality

  22. Jameisbucsfan Says:

    People who think he won’t get drafted are going to be shocked. He is a legitimate speedster with hands. Running a 4.3 40 at the combine or pro day will get him drafted. Hopefully he will be there for us on day 3.