West Orange High School is home to some very talented players, but not that many people yet know about Jordan Castell. They soon will.
Here we are again. Another long, rangy, multi-talented defensive back to study and uncover, and he’s yet another talented underclassmen. Each day that I watch film and watch prospects, it seems as though there’s another truly talented defensive back making a definitive impression.
By Brian Smith @fbscout_florida
Meet Jordan Castell, a junior-to-be defensive back for West Orange High School in Winter Garden, just on the northwest edge of Orlando. It’s a program with a plethora of talent, and Castell is one of its best young prospects.
Recently measured at 6-2 ½ and 206-pounds, perhaps Castell’s best attribute would be his reach; Castell has a massive 6-4 wingspan. That’s the type of length linebackers would be generally associated with. Castell, meanwhile, plays cornerback and safety for West Orange, and he may not be done growing. Again, he is class of 2023, a rising junior this upcoming season. Beyond the measurables, Castell’s film provides some interesting data of its own.
When evaluating Castell, one needs to not only account for what he does now, but what he could do once he reaches the collegiate level. For Castell, that means evaluating him at four different projected positions.
Fluid in and out of his breaks, when a receiver presses him down the field, Castell quickly goes into full stride out of his back pedal. He provides long, loping strides that cover lots of ground and it looks effortless.
At the line of scrimmage, he does press the wide receiver with power. On one particular play, Castell knocked the wide receiver completely down with his jam. Keep in mind that Castell is bigger than most NFL cornerbacks. It’s rare to see cornerbacks over 200-pounds, let alone a cornerback that’s a high school underclassmen that’s 206-pounds like Castell. All that size helps one of Castell’s best qualities.
Regardless of which offensive player Castell is assigned with, he will come off that player immediately when the football heads towards another player. He made multiple plays on the football that were intended for wide receivers covered by other West Orange players.
Once Castell refines his technique in combination with continuing to learn the subtleties of wide receiver route combinations, those instincts and aggressive behaviors will lead to more interceptions. Castell intercepted one pass and broke up four more passes during his sophomore campaign.
This is where it becomes interesting. With a penchant for physical contact, Castell could be the perfect rover, i.e. strong safety, from a traditional standpoint. He is a playmaker when the ball is in the air, so placing him in the middle of the field and closer to the line of scrimmage could be a great option for the right college program.
Then again, perhaps Castell needs to man the deep secondary and be a true free safety where his long strides cover ground and break up deep balls down the sideline. It’s certainly a good option.
Perhaps Castell could play safety at least part of the time. Depending on the team, as well as the circumstance, he’s a fit for safety. That’s something West Orange already does with him. It’s smart. He’s a multi-talented defensive back, at the end of the day. With that, he could play one other pivotal defensive back role.
With the spread offenses lighting up defenses right and left, college defensive coordinators have to be more creative themselves. College offenses are wide open and take many shots down the field, and it’s not only to wide receivers but tight ends and running backs as well.
This is where the hybrid position comes into play. It’s a combination of a nickel cornerback, as well as a safety, that plays in the slot. Considering Castell’s physical talents, he is a great match for this position.
He’s already played cornerback and safety, and he’s very long so he can match up with smaller slot wide receivers as well as be competitive with tight ends. It’s hard to find a player that could do both, but Castell possesses the frame and talent to accomplish this task. One last thought about a position Castell could play.
He’s certainly big enough, fast enough, and strong enough, so Castell could play wide receiver down the line. Hard to imagine a defensive coordinator allowing him to switch sides of the football, but he’s talented enough to make it happen.
In a couple of years, Castell could be 220-pounds. That’s an imposing defensive back or wide receiver. Either way, he’s a very gifted athlete that creates match up issues for the opposing team.
Castell is a player that I want to see live this fall. He’s a part of a very talented team and plays a vital role as a jack-of-all-trades defensive back. Wherever West Orange needs him to play in the secondary, Castell can deliver.
Now, let’s see how this young man progresses into the 2021 season. He has a ton of talent to work with, and he’s one of Central Florida’s best young talents.