In his first year as a starter, Reggie Floyd was a part of secondary full of veterans like Brandon Facyson, Greg Stroman, and Terrell Edmunds who all had double-digit starts under their belts. Coming into that situation, Floyd had the opportunity to develop in a secondary full of talent while also getting to watch how they led in the secondary.
At that time, Floyd didn't appear poised to be in a position of leadership in 2018 with veterans like Terrell Edmunds, Adonis Alexander, and Mook Reynolds all seeming likely to return. Instead, Edmunds went in the first round of the NFL Draft, Alexander left for the NFL Supplemental Draft, and Reynolds was kicked off the team.
With all those departures, Floyd became the Hokies' only returning defensive back with more than a handful of collegiate starts, propelling him into a leadership role in the secondary.
However, Floyd has stepped up into that leadership role and is setting the tone for the rest of the defensive backs.
"Reggie Floyd is a tremendous athlete and a very physical football player. Floyd has taken on a
leadership role in the secondary. He has had a good camp thus far and he continues to improve
every day that he comes out," safeties coach Ty Nix said Monday.
Floyd showed the physicality and cover skills required to excel at the rover last season improving throughout the season and finishing with 72 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 3 interceptions, and 2 forced fumbles. Floyd also made several big plays throughout the season including returning one of his three interceptions for a touchdown against North Carolina and having the game-saving tackle against Pittsburgh in what became a finish to remember.
While Reggie Floyd had some struggles in man coverage, Floyd was more than competent in zone coverage showing some very good ball hawking skills while also being a force in the box. Floyd's style of play proved to be a great fit at the rover position and after moving Terrell Edmunds out of position to open the door for Floyd to play, it's clear that VT will have no plans of having anyone other than Floyd starting at rover until something changes.
Throughout last season, Floyd flew under-the-radar as he slowly but steadily improved into one of the ACC's best young safeties. The Floyd that developed into a playmaker towards the end of the season looked like a guy who was an All-ACC caliber safety living up to the bill of the four-star athlete that he was coming out of high school
Since the end of last season, it's clear that Floyd hasn't taken a day off from developing as a safety based on the comments of Nix and others though that likely isn't a surprise to anyone after watching his improvement and style of play last year.
The only difference now is that expectations and attention will be much higher for Reggie Floyd. Instead of being the new starter in a defensive backfield full of veteran All-ACC caliber players, Floyd is now the featured guy in a defensive backfield that may be as inexperienced as any for the Hokies in the past decade.
However, Floyd has been in situations with more pressure or challenges and as he showed against Pittsburgh, he steps up and makes game-changing plays in the toughest situations.
Photo Credit: Harley Taylor
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