The maturation of Chris Godwin

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Before The Fame

The story of Chris Godwin’s ascension in the NFL has “feel-good” written all over it. Born a small-town kid in Middletown, Delaware, Godwin grew up in a hard-working family. From Middletown High School, where he would lead two state championship teams. The four-star prospect opted to stay in the tri-state area and signed with Penn State University.

After three consecutive years of heightened production, Godwin declared for the NFL draft and the rest is well….history in the making. Fast forward to today, when Godwin was announced as NFC Offensive Player of The Week after torching the Falcons for 184 yards and two touchdowns. What you see is a tremendous amount of growth over a short amount of time.

A Product of Production

Chris Godwin’s numbers, as well as his savvy, have grown each year since joining the league. For a third round pick to currently be in the top five in the NFL for receiving yards, receiving touchdowns is amazing. To currently have more yards than All-Pro receiver and teammate, Mike Evans, is something NFC defensive coordinators should be taking note of. Godwin currently has 1,071 yards and nine touchdowns with 5 games still left to go. He outperformed his 2018 seasons’ yardage total….two games ago. And for all good intents and purposes, he doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.

So as I thought it over and really took a closer look, it became more clearer to me than ever: Chris Godwin is excelling at such a fast rate because he’s an extremely intelligent football player. Mistakes for him rarely happen twice. Two things that stood out to me about Godwin was his superb hands and his his ability as a receiver after the catch. Two things I believed he needed to work on to become consistent in the NFL was his separation on routes and a better showing of his 4.4 speed he displayed at the combine. By the beginning of his sophomore season, Godwin had already achieved the former and so far this season has been on a mission to disprove the latter.

A Closer Look At The Tape

When taking closer look at the tape, you notice that Godwin actually plays like a quicker Mike Evans (which is deadly if you ask anybody). He’s a big bodied receiver with an added variable of speed, spacing and unreal hands. For all of you who can close your eyes and enjoy a daydream highlight of Godwin catching a bullet pass over the middle from Jameis only to be laid out by a defender and still secure the catch, odds are you’re like most of us.

It’s just become routine at this point. If it hits his gloves, he’s likely coming down with it. Beyond just his great hands, 2019 Chris Godwin is also finally showing off the speed, power, and burst that he showcased at Penn State as well as the draft combine. His 71 yard touchdown last week in his coming out game against Atlanta shows it all.

No Need to Pump The Brakes

What I want to make sure Tampa Bay realizes is this is in no way an over-hype of any sorts. Chris Godwin is excelling at the receiver position at an alarmingly high rate. History tells us he will only get better, too. At Middletown Highschool, Godwin had three, 700 yard seasons before going off for 1,200 yards his senior year. At Penn State, he increased his numbers from 338 to 1,101 and finally to a modest regression of 982 yards his junior year (albeit, his touchdowns still jumped from  five to eleven). In Tampa Bay, his numbers went from 525 to 842 to currently having 1,071 yards with 5 games to go. Chris Godwin only knows how to get better. From the heartland of Delaware to loud Saturday nights in College Station. The hope is Tampa Bay is Godwins’ final destination.

Photo credit: buccaneers.com

 

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