Entry Draft Spotlight: Warren Jeffrey
Warren Jeffrey (Vermont ’19 by way of Mimico, Ontario) is an on-ball bully. “Moose” is a chess piece most PLL defenses don’t have on their board: A 6-3, 210 pound bruiser who can bang with super-sized scorers at GLE.
The field is shrinking. Trimming 10 yards out of the middle of the field removed the runway for downhill dodgers. We’re seeing more inverts and postups at the island. And some of the best attackmen in the world – Matt Rambo, Zed Williams, Rob Pannell – use their strength to punish undersized defenders.
Jeffrey can cover those bull dodgers. Take a look at the tape: He drew Randy Staats in the 2019 semifinals then battled for 60 minutes with John Grant Jr. in the 2019 MLL Championship. His role was pivotal toward the Bayhawks championship run.
He stymied Staats with physical holds and timely checks.
His battle with John Grant Jr. was a pay-per-view, heavyweight bout. Grant Jr. baits defenders into throwing stick checks. Reach or overplay one shoulder, and he’ll roll back the other way. Defending him requires balance, patience, and precision – Jeffrey displayed all three.
Jeffrey won’t be a top cover guy week-in and week-out. Teammates will take the Grant Ament and Jordan Wolf matchups. Then, he can slide into an off-ball roll as a heads-up help defender, tying up hands as he arrives.
Stopping (or at least containing) Rambo and Zed is a must for any club with championship hopes. Those two shot a combined 31.3% off the dodge in 2020. Every team – besides the Redwoods in the semifinals – was overwhelmed with one or both of those matchups.
“Rangy” used to be the blanket adjective for the ideal defenseman. It’s not anymore. Crowding opponents on the perimeter is still nice; but anchoring down and not giving up ground at GLE is the top priority. Jeffrey can hold his ground down low against the strongest dodgers.