Skip to main content

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

5 Things to Know: S Jordan Whitehead

Get to know five fast facts about the do-it-all safety out of the University of Pittsburgh.


View pictures of the Buccaneers' fourth-round pick, Pitt S Jordan Whitehead. Photos by AP Images.

  1. He's a product of his environment.**
    Whitehead is from Aliquippa, Pennsylvania. It's a small town of under 10,000 people outside of Pittsburgh that has produced its fair share of pro football legends and players including: Hall of Famers Mike Ditka and Tony Dorsett, Ty Law, Curt Singer and Darrelle Revis.

2. He's got football in his blood.
Speaking of Revis, he and Whitehead are cousins. Whitehead recalls being at Revis's draft party as a child and seeing him get drafted into the league in 2007. According to Whitehead, Revis has been involved in his own path to the draft and he communicates with him regularly.

3. He was a two-way player in college.
Not only did Whitehead play safety at Pittsburgh, he played running back as well. The Panthers threw him in at running back in November of his freshman season and the result was a 10.2 yards-per-attempt average as he rushed 12 times for 122 yards and two touchdowns. He finished his Pittsburgh career with a yards-per-attempt average of 9.4 and scored three offensive touchdowns. His versatility projects well to translate on special teams at the NFL level. His ability to come downhill on tackles will make him useful as a coverage player on kickoffs, especially.

4. He started his collegiate career with a bang.
Whitehead earned ACC Rookie of the Year and Defensive Rookie of the Year honors in 2015 as a true freshman, due partly to his two-way playing ability. He was also the first defensive player to be selected as ACC Rookie of the Year since 1996. At safety, he played in all 13 games for the Panthers, registering 108 tackles, one interception, six pass deflections and a fumble recovery. He was also a consensus freshman All-American that season and made the All-ACC Academic Football Team.

5. He has cornerback experience, adding to his versatility.
He initially came out of high school as a cornerback, but Pitt utilized him at the safety position because of his run-support ability, according to his draft profile. His first year at the safety position was his freshman year in college where he started 12 of 13 games on defense. He was Pennsylvania's number one overall prospect according to and one of the most highly recruited corners in the country at the time. He played offense as well in high school, ending his prep career with 35 touchdowns in his senior season, scored five different ways: rushing, receiving, interception return, kickoff return and punt return.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Latest Headlines