(Photo: Brian Perroni, 247Sports) With the rest of Florida’s 2017 signees now on campus for the Summer B semester, GatorBait.net takes a look at where each one fits in with our signee outlook series. Today we conclude with safety Donovan Stiner .
Overview: The Gators have plenty of safeties that can play heading into 2017, but the outlook gets much sketchier moving forward into the future. That will allow the younger safeties on the roster a chance to push for backup minutes this fall and special teams roles that will allow them to be more ready to play when they’re needed in 2018.
Strengths: Length, Run Support
At 6 foot 1, Stiner is a lanky player who can be disruptive in the shot and intermediate passing lanes. He was used primarily near the box in high school, showing the ability to go sideline to sideline and act as a downhill tackler against the run. He is a physical player.
The one question with Stiner is how well he can do playing in space deep in the back end of the field. He probably projects best as a strong safety, particularly if he can add more weight to his current listing at 194. He has the frame to do so. He would need some technique work and time and reps to develop into a player capable of manning a free safety role.
How He Fits: With two starting safeties back in Marcell Harris and Nick Washington , the only real thing left to be settled at safety is who backs them up. With Chauncey Gardner being a strong option there if he’s not needed at corner and Jeawon Taylor impressing as a freshman, the Gators may be fine without anyone else contributing at the position.
Projection: Stiner will probably take a redshirt barring a very impressive fall camp. If he does get on the field, it’ll likely be as a special teams player thanks to the sheer number of capable players at safety this fall.
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Contact Thomas Goldkamp by 247Sports’ personal messaging system or on Twitter at @ThomasGoldkamp .