True freshman could be an offensive monster for LSU football in 2020

LSU Football head coach Ed Orgeron (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
LSU Football head coach Ed Orgeron (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

True freshman tight end Arik Gilbert could be a game changer for LSU football in 2020.

LSU football could have one of the nation’s most dangerous offensive weapons in 2020.

And it’s a player that’s never played a down of college football.

True freshman tight end Arik Gilbert signed with the Tigers last December after being rated as the No. 1 tight end in the nation and the No. 5 overall 2021 recruit.

Gilbert, 6-foot-5/253 lbs from Marietta, GA, is an athletic freak who has an unbelievable size/speed combination that could make him one of the most difficult mismatches in college football.

The Georgia native is described by 247Sports director of scouting Barton Simmons as “highly competitive”. Simmons also noted that Gilbert has the “offensive skill-set to become one of the most unique tight end prospects in years”.

How will LSU use Gilbert?

This is where things will get fun for LSU.

We already know that Gilbert is a gifted athlete with rare talents.

But how will the the Tigers put those talents to use?

Gilbert won’t be used exclusively as a traditional tight end. He’ll be moved around a lot.

In fact, Ed Orgeron said on Wednesday that Gilbert will be used a lot like the Detroit Lions used future hall of fame wide receiver Calvin Johnson.

New LSU passing game coordinator Scott Linehan was Johnson’s offensive coordinator from 2009-2013.

2010-2013 was the best four year stretch of Johnson’s career (in 2012, Johnson had 122 receptions for 1,964 yards), so it’s clear that Linehan knows how to use big, elite receivers.

On top of the Linehan influence, Gilbert will have Myles Brennan, who has a Matthew Stafford like arm, throwing him the ball in Baton Rouge.

While I don’t think it would be wise to expect Megatron like numbers from Gilbert in 2020, I think we could see the former five-star recruit have one of the best seasons ever for a collegiate tight end.

LSU is going to do a lot of things with Gilbert that we didn’t see the Tigers offense do in 2019.

Coach O and his staff — especially offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger — have made it a point to mold their offense to their players’ strengths.

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And it’s clear that’s what they’ll be doing with Gilbert in 2020.