COVINGTON, Ga. - Alcovy Tigers defensive back Jaquez Snell made a huge player early that ultimately catapulted his team to an impressive victory and has earned him Chick-Fil-A Covington player of the week honors.
After the Tigers clash with the Rockdale County Bulldogs, I wrote that Covington football fans needed to get to know Snell due to his lockdown corner abilities. These abilities were put on full display against the Salem Seminoles in the early stages of the game.
The Tigers earned victory number one of the season with a commanding 41-2 victory over the Seminoles, and the team's shutdown defense played a huge role in the win. That shutdown performance on the defensive side of the ball was apparent on the very first possession of the game.
The Seminoles were on the Tigers side of the field looking to make a first down on a third-down out route. Tigers defensive back Jaquez Snell jumped the route and picked it off en route to a 62-yard interception that he took back all the way for a touchdown.
Head coach Jason Dukes said after the game that when he saw the read that Snell had made; he knew six points were about to flash on the board for his Tigers.
"Hats off to Jaquez Snell who really rebounded and gave us spark with a pick-six. That really set the tone for us," said Dukes. "As soon as he caught the ball, both of my hands went up because I knew it was a touchdown and he did what he does, and it was a great play for us."
Although this may be one remarkable play, the timing and the importance of the play are what make it substantially prominent. As Dukes said, Snell's interception set the tone early for the Tigers and ultimately swung the momentum in the Tigers direction.
They would ride this initial momentum swing for the duration of the game and cruise to a comfortable victory.
The Tigers defense was on point for the whole game and held the visiting Seminoles well under 100 yards of total offense. By my count, the Tigers defense had held the Seminoles to 9 yards of total offense in the first half.
As a team captain, Snell's leadership helped corral his team and bounce back after a troublesome loss last week to the Eastside Eagles. This was also an excellent rebound performance for Snell, whose fumble on a punt return in the game against the Eagles led to a crucial touchdown in the second half.
Despite that one miscue, Snell has been a standout defensive performer for the Tigers and in all of Newton County. Snell has three interceptions on the season, and opposing receivers have not had much success on his side of the field.
Snell has every reason to be pleased with his play in the most recent game and hopes to continue to build on his most recent performance. Although he is happy with how he played, he still has one main area of his game that he wants to improve.
"Coming downhill. I still need to work on coming downhill and making the tackle behind the line of scrimmage, so that's what I'm really trying to improve on," said Snell.
Snell is our first defensive player of the week, and if he keeps up his stellar play, he could earn this honor in the future.