Breaking News: Mike Norvell Name His His FSU Football’s Next Star Defensive End

Mike Norvell Believes Patrick Payton Could Be FSU Football’s Next Star Defensive End
The FSU Football head coach addressed other crucial position groups as well in a recent interview.
Florida State football head coach Mike Norvell was recently interviewed by 247Sports’ Brandon Marcello who questioned about the depth of key position groupings a few weeks into spring practices.

Norvell had plenty to say about his outstanding bunch of wide receivers, especially the sophomore five-star recruit Hykeem Williams and coveted transfers in Malik Benson (Alabama) and Jalen Brown (LSU).

“I think the guys you talked about. I mean, I’m really thrilled about – you saw Hykeem Williams last year as a true freshman. You saw Destyn Hill, who’s the kid that I think has such a high ceiling of what he can achieve, and you really watch him progress and he’s had a tremendous first week and half of practice,” said Norvell. “Then you also have older guys, Ja’Khi Douglas last year when Keon [Coleman] and Johnny [Wilson] were both out, he was up in Pittsburgh with six [receptions] for over 100 [yards]. And even in the bowl game, he had to go and play some running back just due to others not being available. I mean, he could truly do it all and you see those individuals that have kind of emerged and played a role that now get an opportunity to take another step.”

The FSU head coach would subsequently comment about Jalen Brown’s talents and his growth physically since arriving in Tallahassee.

“I’m really excited about Jalen and he’s definitely got the homerun-hitting ability. He’s got quick feet, can get in and out of breaks. You can see the confidence that’s emerging even through the first eight weeks of our winter program of just what he’s doing in the weight room and so, he’s done a really wonderful job,” said Norvell. “I think even after the first couple of practices – practice three, practice four – you saw some big steps from him. So, certainly excited what he’s going to bring and like I said, there’s a lot of competition. But when you have guys who can run that are great playmakers, there’s always going to be an opportunity for them and so we’re really looking forward to Jalen and his ongoing development.”

Moreover, Norvell shared his thoughts on the retention of defensive end Patrick Payton and the addition of transfers Marvin Jones Jr. (Georgia), Sione Lolohea (Oregon State), and Tomiwa Durojaiye (West Virginia).

Starting with Payton’s return to Florida State, Norvell remarked “It’s huge.”

“You look at what Pat returning and even a guy like Byron Turner, who played a lot of good snaps for us last year, he’s another year into it. But bringing Marvin, bringing in Sione, I mean those guys – Sione was a second-team All-PAC 12 defensive end that brings a physicality, a toughness, an attitude. [Tomiwa] has the versatility to be outdoors but also can go down inside a little bit. I enjoy the room a lot.”

“Obviously we’ve had big names that have come in. I think Pat Payton has a potential to be that great name in college football this next year at the end position. But also with Marvin, with Byron, with players like Jaden Jones who was coming off an injury two years ago, that’s evolved and matured. I’m enthusiastic about the defensive end room and really what that can do to help those guys on the inside, who I believe are really good players as well,” concluded Norvell.

The FSU head coach is starting his fifth year with the program. He is 31-17 since arriving in Tallahassee and has gone 23-4 in his last two seasons.

Stick with NoleGameday for additional coverage of Florida State football throughout the spring.

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