EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Jefferson had one of its most successful seasons in program history in 2021. The Silver Foxes collected a 6-5 record overall and 3-3 in District 1-5A Division II play. The Silver Foxes also secured a spot in the playoffs, which was their first playoff appearance since 2017.

A talented group of seniors led the Silver Foxes in 2021, but now that they’ve moved on, its time for the next group of young talent to step in.

“It was a great experience. We had a lot of great seniors, guys gave it all they got,” said Jefferson head coach Tony Martinez. “They were starters as sophomores, so it was their opportunity, so we are back to not square one but we have a good group coming back but I am really excited about the young guys coming up.”

The quarterback position will be something to keep an eye out for Jefferson. With Nathan Alcala, a senior last year who threw 23 touchdown passes, no longer with the program, it was time for head coach Tony Martinez to find his next quarterback.

“We had to move on, so we ended up having a tryout for quarterback,” said Martinez. “We found a young man that we think is athletic enough to do it in Andre Lopez and I think he will do okay.”

Lopez will have some weapons alongside him on the offense. Roman Gomez, a senior wide receiver; Miguel Rubio, a junior running back; and Dilan Navarro, a senior wide receiver, are all expected to be playmakers for the Silver Foxes.

Gomez was the team leader in 2021 in receptions (43), receiving yards (576), and receiving touchdowns (9). Navarro was right behind Gomez in those statistics as he collected 35 receptions, 499 receiving yards, and seven receiving touchdowns.

Even with two of the team’s top wide receivers back for another year, the Silver Foxes are looking forward to developing new playmakers for this season.

“Last year we had a really talented offense and very different offense from what we have this year,” said Gomez. “We have new playmakers, different players, so I think the biggest part is just figuring out who are playmakers are and using them just like we did last year.”

With some key returners back for 2022 and with the potential to find more playmakers with a youthful team, once things start clicking for the Silver Foxes, they feel they can make another trip to the playoffs.

“I think we are capable of making another playoff run,” said Martinez. “We are in a very tough district but if we minimize injuries, execute the way we practice, I think we’ll have an opportunity of at least getting that third or fourth playoff spot.”

Jefferson will open up its 2022 season with an away game at Horizon on Aug. 26.