Lovie Smith excited to coach “fastest guy in the NFL,” Jeff Demps


Jeff Demps is far from the best player on the Buccaneers, but he’s one of the players new Tampa Bay head coach Lovie Smith is most excited to coach.

Smith said that Demps, who won a silver medal on the American 4×100-meter relay team in the 2012 Olympics, has the raw talent to make big plays with the ball in his hands. It’s up to Smith and the coaching staff to put Demps in a position where he’s making those plays.

“I’ve never had a chance to coach the fastest guy in the NFL,” Smith told ESPN. “And we talked about his commitment to football and he loves track but he considers himself a football player and he’s anxious to get started with whatever position we ask him to play, whether it’s running back or wide receiver or returning kicks. Again, we’re a new staff coming in so we’re going to give guys an option to do what they feel like they do best.”

Demps has hardly played so far in his NFL career, with just one carry for 14 yards, three catches for 21 yards and four kickoff returns for 93 yards. But Demps was a good running back and kick returner at Florida, and Smith said Demps will get a lot of opportunities to show that he can be a major contributor in the NFL.

62 responses to “Lovie Smith excited to coach “fastest guy in the NFL,” Jeff Demps

  1. Finally!! We were witing for the Bucs to utilize him last year. Hopefully he will concentrate on football this season instead of track! The Bucs feel the need for speed!!

  2. Lovie will be thrilled when Jeff tells him that he can devote every other Thursday and two Mondays a month to Buccaneers practice when his track & field training takes an off-day.

    The only thing better than coaching the fastest guy in the NFL is coaching the part-time fastest guy in the NFL.

  3. This is only true because they don’t have many premium players, such as Darrelle Revis as an example and first to come to mind.

    So Lovie, so how many times in your NFL career have you had a chance to coach a guy like Revis??

  4. Marquis “Flash” Gordon from Bills is right in there also and he can catch the ball

  5. ok demps here is how Lovie uses fast guys, on 3rd down you will get the wide receiver screen which will work the first 5 times they throw it to you but then you will get drilled for no gain or a loss every time after. that is how Lovie used speed with hester and the bears.

  6. Very exciting to coach a player who gets injured the first time he gets hit in the NFL.See NE 2012, TB 2013 as he played one series for both teams.

    Thanks again for L Blount and his 700 + yards last season

  7. Didn’t demos lose to Trinidad Holliday in the sec championship a few years back. Holliday was the 100 meter champ, so that would put demos 2nd at best

  8. Problem is that “track guys” never really do that well in the NFL. Mind bending speed means nothing if you cannot catch the ball or hear the footsteps coming. Offhand, I think Willie Gault with the Bears had the most success in the NFL coming off a track background and that was 25-30 years ago.

  9. I’m still waiting for an answer Lovie, you’re not going to keep me waiting all day now are you? Speaking of All Day, how many times have you…you know what forget it, you just aren’t worth my time, at least you got dem Demps though. Good luck with your season.

  10. Oh, boy. I think Demps just leap frogged Jackson as the teams #1 receiver. What’s that you say? he can’t catch, run routes, or block. Perfect for Smith. It didn’t matter to him before.

  11. Speed in the NFL is over-rated. Barry Sanders wasn’t faster than Deion Sanders…

    But did you ever see Deion Sanders tackle Barry Sanders???

  12. After Earl Campbell came in dead last in a one mile run, Bum Phillips said:

    “Well, I guess I won’t be putting him in on third and a mile.”

  13. Straight line speed isn’t very useful if you can’t make a cut and maintain the speed. Guys like DeSean Jackson are very successful because he can cut on a dime and get back to top speed within a few steps. Guys who need a while to reach top speed get caught by those with an angle.

  14. Sorry, Marquise “Flash” Goodwin doesn’t play for Tampa Bay…but he’s the fastest in the NFL…he is tied for the 2nd or 3rd fastest 40 yard dash at the combine, ever.

    Guys like Ted Ginn and Trindon Holliday are NOT faster than Marquise Goodwin…he’s an Olympian for a reason.

    40 yard dash times:

    Jeff Demps – 4.29
    Trindon Holliday – 4.34
    Ted Ginn – 4.31
    Marquise Goodwin – 4.26 (4.17 once too)

    Goodwin is the best WR out of them too…just wait and see if you doubt it, I saw him go up and take a ball away from a CB who is at least 6 inches taller than him. The kid’s a straight up baller, he has legit talent.

  15. I’d love to see a 100m meter race between Mike Wallace, Chris Johnson, Desean Jackson, Tedd Ginn, Patrick Peterson, Tavon Austin, Jacoby Ford, Trindon Holliday and the rookie that ran a 4.26 at the Combine, Dri Archer.

  16. What needs to be clarified here is the part where he said he’s going to “coach” the fastest guy….he never did anything in Chicago with Hester, he had the best Special Teams coach in the biz, Dave Toub doing that for him….

  17. Jeff Demps has a lot of pure speed. It the past, Jeff has considered himself a running back. I hope Lovie can convince him to play WR. He can make a huge difference if he successfully transitioned to WR. He could develop into the receiver who can stretch any opponents defense. He’s always been able to catch short passes coming out of the backfield. Love to watch him hauling in those long bombs and pulling away from the defenders!

  18. Not a Cowboy fan, but Bob Hayes was an Olympic gold medal winner in the 100 and an All Pro end for D. Yes, I know, that was a long time ago.

  19. Its gonna be fun to see what Tedford can do with this guy. He showed a couple flashes last year before he got hurt. We havent had a quick/fast guy like him since warrick dunn in my mind (galloway was quick but old and would blow a tire every few weeks)

  20. Lovie like lil fast guys that fly to the ball, so this doesn’t surprise me. Lovie made Bear football exciting to watch again, Tampa got a good one.


  21. Lovie and his staff are always big on special teams. He could mold Demps into a Hester type of threat.

  22. Caught passes in the backfield @ UF pretty frequently if I recall correctly. I sure hope Lovie contacts thestrategyexpert soon so he can win us another SB ring and get inducted into the hof in one fell swoop.

  23. I remember when Lovie was excited about Cedric Benson, too (over Thomas Jones)…and Hester at WR….and Rex was our quarterback…and Tommie Harris has so much talent….and we get off the bus running the ball, etc.

    I shudder whenever I hear this man praising a player, because he may be a lot of good things, but he’s also horribly, horribly STUBBORN.

    Sorry Bucs fans – but that is his glaring and eternal Achilles’ heel as a coach.

    If something is clearly not working – rest assured, Lovie will stick with it no matter what. The man never met an in-game adjustment he refused to consider.

    Prepare for pull-your-own-hair-out frustration, because the problems will be SO obvious to all (but Lovie), and in response to all your emotion, Lovie gives you back all the passion and charisma of a dehydrated fleck of fly poop on a dull gray wall.


  24. Demps has a great racket going. I am certain that everyone who posts here would love to make seven figures for playing NFL football, let alone pretending we want to play the game like Demps is getting away with.

  25. Last I checked the field is 100 yards long not forty …Demps is an Olympic athlete who is also a football player….# excited

  26. does the name mike wallace mean anything? no one in the nfl can touch him. period

    the difference nobody has to touch him…odds are 50/50 he drops the ball

  27. Lovie is a descent coach, but when he stands on the sideline watching his game plan fall apart be sure to watch for the “deer into headlights stare.”

    I am extremely happy with my teams new management and coach. Sorry Lovie, but you had your chance, Trestman/Emery have done more improving the Bears in the 1st year than Angelo and you did in almost a decade…

    Good luck Tampa and most of all Josh!!!

  28. He isn’t the fastest unless he hangs up the track shoes, and starts putting his focus fully on football. Enough of yanking around the teams he’s been on.

  29. bygd1 says:Mar 27, 2014 4:32 PM

    Marquis “Flash” Gordon from Bills is right in there also and he can catch the ball

    Its Marquise Goodwin dude, but he is most definitely in the discussion for fastest in the NFL.

  30. Lol you guys know nothing about true speed. A 40 yard dash isn’t an indicator of speed, its a measurement of acceleration. In the 100m dash ( which is the universal distance to determine someone speed) is broken down into 3 parts acelleraton, terminal velocity, and finish. Line all the so called “fast” nfl player with Demps in an accurate speed race and it will not be close. I use to love shattering peoples egos that had “football speed” lol. (Words from an all american sprinter/ football player)

  31. And the guy talkin about marques godwin. He is an Olympian but in the long jump!!! Not even a running event. He is fast tho but won’t beat demps…sorry!

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