Next two-way star? Michigan CB says 'I'm a little Antonio Brown'

It's rare for a college football team to have one player talented enough to play on both sides of the ball.

Two on the same team? No coach is that lucky, except perhaps Jim Harbaugh.

The Michigan coach said Sunday that All-Big Ten cornerback Jourdan Lewis, like teammate Jabrill Peppers, could provide some help on the offensive side of the ball. Lewis made a public pitch to play some offense at Big Ten Media Days last month, describing himself as "a little Antonio Brown." But Sunday marked an acknowledgement from Harbaugh that Lewis' wish could be something more than, well, a wish.

"On offense, I think there are multiple ways he could contribute offensively," Harbaugh said, via the Detroit Free Press, when asked if Lewis could see time at wide receiver. "We know he can as a returner, a hold-up person, a gunner, kick and punt returner. We know he has those abilities and capabilities. I don't think I'm going too far out on a limb in saying I think he can help us offensively as well."

Lewis is lacking in size (5-foot-10, 175 pounds), but broke up 20 passes for the Wolverines last year and is regarded as the No. 9 defensive back to watch this year in college football by NFL Media analyst Lance Zierlein. Peppers, of course, is established as one of the college game's two-way players, having seen action on both sides of the ball, and on special teams as well, for the Wolverines last season. College Football 24/7 selected him as the most versatile player in the nation earlier this summer. Harbaugh said the number of snaps a two-way contributor plays needs to be monitored.

"I feel like there is (a limit) around that 90-, 95-play (range), 100 being really high (in snaps) per game," Harbaugh said. "Somewhere in there, there is a sweet spot depending on the mental capability of the athlete."

If Lewis has the chops to play some offense as well, he'll have to find a role amid two returning veterans in Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh, who both delivered 50-plus receptions for 700-plus yards last season.

*Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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.

Related Content