SAN ANTONIO, Tex. — Former Southern Oregon wide receiver Jordan Suell hasn't had the straightest path to professional football, and the journey there is far from over, but he hopes his next stop helps reach the destination.
Suell, a first-team, all-conference receiver, was drafted into The Spring League and now has a chance to impress some pro teams.
"I just got to tell myself, I got to keep going," Suell said the day before his first game for the Generals. "Coming from a small school, nobody's going to give you a helping hand out there. You gotta do it all for yourself. And you know, teams are gonna find you no matter where you're at and you just gotta make the plays when the time comes."
The Spring League is a self-described "elite professional football development league" that hopes to provide an avenue for players to reach football's most competitive league, the National Football League. They're playing five regular-season games in San Antonio, Texas, in a bubble similar to the one implemented by the NBA. Some of the games will be nationally televised on Fox Sports 1.
Some of Suell's former teammates and coaches think he has what it takes to make it to the next level. The 6-foot-6, 205-pound receiver is quite the presence on the field, especially when he showcases his 4.4-second 40-yard dash speed. Physical skills combined with a willingness to learn and improve could be Suell's ticket to the pros.
"I feel like Jordan's going to be on somebody's team by next year because he's so coachable," SOU wide receivers coach Matt Boudreaux said. Boudreaux played with Suell for a year in 2018 and spent 2019 as the assistant wide receivers coach. "[Suell] takes what coaches teach him and he brings it out on the field. Like if you tell them to run this route at eight yards, he's going to run his route eight yards."
The pedigree is there too for the Vancouver, Washington native. He finished his SOU career fourth on the all-time receiver touchdown list with 27 scores, an impressive feat considering he missed most of his junior season. He also became just the tenth Raider ever to record over 2,000 receiving yards, tallying 2,184 yards.
Suell was drafted as one of the five wide receivers on the Generals and his first game is the first Spring League game to be nationally televised. It kicks-off at 5 pm Pacific Time as the Generals take on the Conquerors in Week 1.
"Right now I'm not actually that nervous," Suell said on Monday. "But I think when I first a play or so comes I might be a little nervous, but after the first play that'll be gone."
— The Spring League �� (@TheSpringLeague) October 11, 2020