Brevin Jordan: Path to the NFL DRaft
The Miami Hurricanes have historically been a tight end factory. Dating back to Steve Smith in 1968 and all the way up to Chris Herndon in 2018, 21 players at the position have been drafted to the NFL. In the 2021 NFL Draft, Brevin Jordan is primed to be the next one off the conveyor belt from “TEU”.
“Year in, year out, whether it’s first round or seventh round, guys get drafted at the tight end position from Miami. It’s just the way things work. We’ve had like six or maybe five tight ends drafted in the first round. It’s just a tight end factory. The offense has always evolved around the tight end. We play a huge chess piece in the offense. That’s what makes us “Tight End U”, we set records.”
'We Were Football Players - It Was Destined'
Tight ends out of the University of Miami have the reputation of being insane athletes. You better be sure that Brevin Jordan is going to continue that trend when he heads to the NFL.
“I’m simply a play-maker. I’m different. 6’3”, 240 pounds. My legs are huge, my butt is big. I’m not the tallest guy, but I’m a big dude and I’m athletic as hell.”
The Miami tight end is currently working on that athletic profile out of Phase One in Las Vegas. It’s back home for Brevin Jordan, where he grew up surrounded my football. The influence was felt from day one, literally.
“It started literally when I came out the womb. My dad went to the NFL, my older brother he was playing football already. We were football players, it was destined.”
His father, Darrell, was a standout college linebacker. Darrell was drafted to the Atlanta Falcons in the ninth round of the 1990 NFL Draft. Although he wasn’t around to witness his father’s college career first-hand, the family ensured that his legacy featured prominently in Brevin Jordan’s early life. It acted as a catalyst for his own football journey.
“My dad had this big booklet that his parents made for him. It was a big booklet of the newsletters, pictures of him, records he was breaking. It was everything that showed his football career, it was crazy. I think that moment was when we kinda realised “damn our dad was pretty good at football, let’s try to keep some stuff going with it.””
Sophomore Scholarship Offer Opens Brevin's Eyes
Inspired by the likes of Reggie Bush – “I loved the way he played the game, probably the most influential college football player of my generation” – the young Brevin Jordan was a running back. You can still see the experience and influence when he runs with the ball in his hands. It wasn’t until his arrival at Bishop Gorman High School that he made the transition from running the rock to catching passes.
“I was only like 200 pounds, but I was bigger than everybody. I was a skinny dude, but I was just bigger than everybody coz it’s freshman football. So, they were like let’s move you to tight end. They moved me to tight end and I really fell in love with it.”
After a successful season as a freshman, Brevin Jordan began to garner the attention of college programs. As a sophomore he attracted his first offer from Colorado. A humble kid, the offer awakened a realisation that football could be more than just a game for him.
“That right there was when I realised “man, I could do something like, I’m good enough to play college football”. I’d never really thought about myself, never really thought it could be that big. I was just playing football, never really knew the business side of it. When I got an offer in my sophomore year, I was like “I could go to the NFL, I could really do this”.”
High School Halcyon Days
Not only did his career at Bishop Gorman inspire a belief, it also presented him with great opportunities. Additionally, it allowed him experiences that would stand him in good stead through his football career. Gorman is an extremely successful footballing powerhouse, and Brevin Jordan was a key part of it.
“It was one of those things that I’m going to carry with me the rest of my life, until the day I die. We won three national championships. I only lost two games in my time at Gorman and it was my senior year. It was the greatest experience from the standpoint of academics, standard of living, because I’m living in a huge city that is constantly moving. Wherever I get drafted to, the city scene is going to be nothing new to me. I was born and raised in Las Vegas and played for a powerhouse team.”
“Football wise, we were hitting the weight room all the time. We were constantly watching film all the time. It was really like a college program with the nice facilities we had. It was the greatest experience ever.”
Amongst all the championships, amongst all the success, one games stands out.
“My junior year, we won 27-26 in triple overtime to St. Thomas Aquinas. It was like a national championship football game, we needed to win that game to keep our number one spot. That game, to this day, is the greatest game I’ve ever partaken in. It was ridiculous, it was loud, it was crazy!”
'Tight End U'
Over his high school career Brevin Jordan amassed 1700 receiving yards from 100 receptions, securing 29 touchdowns. Having received his first offer from Colorado, he went on to receive offers from major programs like Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio State. The four star recruit, number two player in Nevada, and the number one overall tight end in the 2018 recruiting class narrowed his options down to three teams.
“The recruiting process was very easy for me to be honest with you. Me and my mum had the same mindset when it came to the recruiting process. It was just easy, you know? Me and my mum would look at each other and we would be like “nope, or yep”. We came down to the final three schools of Michigan, UCLA, and Miami. Miami just fit the mould. We looked at each other and we were like “it’s far but this is perfect for you” and we went with it. For me, it was the city of Miami. I’m from a city that never sleeps, and Miami is the same sort of way. The city really caught my eye.”
“Then the football team and the tradition that “Tight End U” holds. Anybody that tries to disclaim that, tries to say anything otherwise, they’re completely wrong. Miami is “Tight End U”, no question. That caught my eye. Bubba Franks, Jeremy Shockey, David Njoku, Chris Herndon, I’d seen the success they’d had, and I was ready to go. I committed and I never wavered from that commitment.”
Prior to his freshman season in Miami Brevin Jordan suffered some personal adversity. His father, whose footballing career had inspired his own journey, passed away suddenly. He told me about the emotions of overcoming that adversity and the emotions he felt on making his debut for Miami.
“Man, that first game we played LSU in the Dallas Cowboys stadium. The whole stadium was filled. When we ran out the tunnel, I like legit let one loose because I was so nervous. The emotions that were going through my head were crazy. The emotions were running 1000 miles but at soon as we set that football down and we were ready to go on offense, all the nerves just went away.”
He went on to make 11 starts as a freshman and scored 4 touchdowns. His performances as a true freshman earned All-ACC Second Team honors. Whereas a lot of freshman redshirt or see limited playing time, Brevin Jordan’s immediate impact for the Hurricanes came as no surprise.
“I knew. That was also one of the reasons I chose Miami. Chris Herndon just left to the NFL. So, I came in and they needed a tight end, needed some help at the tight end position. So, I knew that I was going to come in as long as I do what I do. No hesitation, I knew I was going to come in and make an immediate impact.”
'I Never, Ever, Took An L To Florida State'
The All-ACC Second Team honors were just the beginning for the Miami tight end. As a sophomore in 2019, he earned All-ACC First Team honors and was a finalist for the prestigious Mackey Award. Despite missing three games in 2020, he still tied the team for receiving touchdowns while also earning All-ACC Second Team honors for the second time in his Miami career.
Despite all the recognition and accolades, something more personal stands out for Brevin Jordan.
“The one thing that I hold above everything else is that I never lost to Florida State. I am 3-0 against the Florida State Seminoles. I never, ever, took an L to Florida State. That’s the number one thing for me, that’s the top tier. That’s Mount Everest for me. Forget them, forget the ‘Noles. I’m 3-0 against them.”
As he points out, for the first two seasons in Miami there wasn’t a great deal of success for the program. There wasn’t a lot of memorable wins – aside from beating FSU of course. However, his junior season was the most successful of his career. The Miami offense stepped up a gear with the arrival on campus of former Houston quarterback D’Eriq King.
The two immediately clicked and the results on the field were often spectacular.
“D’Eriq’s my guy. As soon as he came on campus, I literally gave him a hug, gave him a kiss on the cheek. I was like “brother we’re going to make something shake this year. You’re the guy!”. Everyone knew from day one that D’Eriq was going to be our guy. There was no hesitation. There was no question. He’s our guy. So when D’Eriq got on campus, I immediately built that relationship with him. The thing with D’Eriq is: his leadership goals, his leadership intangibles, everything that he brings to the table, it forced us to build a relationship because he’s such a leader. He helped us build a relationship and have a successful year.”
Pro Day: Making A Statement
It would turn out to be Brevin Jordan’s final season in Miami. Following the conclusion of the 2020 college football he declared for the 2021 NFL Draft, foregoing his final year of NCAA eligibility. For the confident tight end, there was no doubt in his mind that this was the right time.
“I was ready. I played three years. Every year I played I was a dominant force. I was a problem for every team that I played, no matter what. Freshman year, sophomore year, junior year. I was just ready to make that next leap. I was ready to start making some money, stop playing the game of football for free. Like, I need to make some money, help my mum out, help my brothers out. I took the leap of faith in myself.”
Having faith in himself is not something that is going to be a problem for Brevin Jordan. The humble kid who had no idea of his own ability as a high school freshman is now acutely aware of what he can do, what he can be, what he can achieve.
From an NFL perspective, it all starts with his Miami Pro-Day.
“I want to go there and run a 4.5 [40 yard dash], a 35” plus vert [vertical jump], and a 10 foot broad. That’s it. Go in and blow them away. Show them the athlete that I am. I’m going to let my talent show at Pro Day. They’re going to see me at Pro Day and fall in love with me. They’re going to see my routes. I’m going to shut down all cynics.”
The Evolution Of The Tight End
The athleticism he brings to the table is an important part of Brevin Jordan’s game. He points to one play in one game that demonstrates to NFL teams how athletic he truly is.
“Louisville” he says without hesitation. “In the Louisville game I hurdled a guy. That’s all you need to see, I feel like. Ok that’s not all you need to see obviously but you turn that film on, you see me jumping over a guy. You can believe the athleticism is there.”
As the NFL has evolved, so has the tight end position. The position is perhaps more important in the game now than ever. The man from “Tight End U” certainly has an appreciation for the importance of the position, and what it takes to become the complete package as he heads to the NFL.
“Oh it’s very important. The guys like Tony Gonzalez and Antonio Gates changed the game. Now you see the importance of having a Travis Kelce, a George Kittle, a Darren Waller. When you have a great tight end in an offense, it makes the offense so much scarier. Are you going to put a nickel on a tight end or a safety or a linebacker? If you try and bracket a tight end on the inside, now you have your outside guys with one-on-one shots.”
'I Know The Standards'
Aside from providing an additional weapon to occupy the defensive co-ordinator’s attention, the blocking element of the tight end position is also a key factor.
“You’re basically a sixth offensive lineman that runs routes. That’s how you have to look at it, how you have to view it. Especially for me at Miami, I’ve had three different offensive co-ordinators with three different systems. For two years I’ve been in a system where I’m in-line, blocking defensive ends. You have to become a blocker, you have to be able to get your nose dirty. My technique’s not the cleanest but my effort is there. Once I clean up my technique it’s going to be scary for dudes because my effort is there. I’m gonna throw my whole body in there and try and get dirty with it.”
An athletic pass catching threat that brings energy and effort to every blocking play, Brevin Jordan also brings leadership to the table. His time at Bishop Gorman helped him learn the keys to a successful team. As a senior, he took that knowledge and applied it as a team captain.
“What made Gorman so successful is the relationship that we had with one another and the accountability we held one another to. Those are two key recipes for me in order to be a part of a winning team. You have to be able to build relationships with the guys, to hang out with them off the field, and holding them accountable. That’s what we perfected at Gorman. From the seniors down to the freshman, we all held each other accountable.”
“Gorman taught me a lot. It taught me accountability, holding guys to a standard. When I was a senior, I was the guy who had to hold the freshmen accountable, hold the sophomores and juniors accountable. I feel like I know the standards for being a team leader.”
Lost For Words
In a little over two months Brevin Jordan will have 52 new team mates to build a relationship with. He tells me he’s spoken to multiple teams including the Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, and Kansas City Chiefs. The interest level seems to be there, as you would expect for one of the most complete tight ends in the 2021 NFL Draft class.
What will it mean to Brevin Jordan hear his name called? Well, the energetic and charismatic tight end is quiet for the first time in our 20 minute long interview.
“No words. There’s no words for it.”
OLIVER HODGKINSON IS A COLLEGE FOOTBALL WRITER FOR THE TOUCHDOWN. HE ALSO WRITES ON THE NFL FOR THE PRO FOOTBALL NETWORK. YOU CAN HEAR HIS OPINIONS ON ALL THINGS COLLEGE FOOTBALL AS ONE THIRD OF THE COLLEGE CHAPS PODCAST.
Huge thanks to Brevin Jordan for taking the time to speak to us.