When he jumped in the air, came down with the ball and ran into the end zone for a 44-yard touchdown less than two minutes into Forestville's season opener, all seemed right for wide receiver Jermaine Lindsay. After a tumultuous offseason in which he committed to a college, began practicing with another team and then returned to the Knights, Lindsay could finally just focus on football.
He finished with four catches for 74 yards and two touchdowns as Forestville defeated Bladensburg, 25-7. Perhaps more importantly, Lindsay showed that he is an offensive threat and the Knights could be a contender in a competitive Prince George's 3A/2A league that includes No. 15 Gwynn Park and Maryland 2A finalist Potomac.
"Lindsay, nobody can really check him," senior quarterback Dennis Anthony said. "He's a big target."
When Forestville's players picked up their equipment for preseason practice, the Knights seemed to have a series of holes to fill. Lindsay, who earlier told Akron he would accept a scholarship to play football, had started practicing with H.D. Woodson. (D.C. schools began practice before their Maryland counterparts.) Anthony, a basketball player expected to replace Andre Jones as the team's starting quarterback, had not played football since eighth grade -- when he played running back -- and did not participate in offseason workouts or passing leagues.
However, things started to fall in place the night before the team's first practice, when Lindsay called Forestville Coach Charles Harley and said he wanted to come back.
"It just didn't feel right," said Lindsay, who is 6 feet 1 and weighs 160 pounds. "I was going to get the ball as many times as I wanted the ball [at H.D. Woodson], but Coach Harley has been my coach all my life. I just couldn't leave."
Lindsay said he had heard that some Forestville players were upset with his decision to transfer, but he was welcomed back at the first practice on Aug. 14.
"We just put it right behind us," senior linebacker John Carter said. "Jermaine has been with us three years now. We didn't need something like that to hold us back. We just forgot it and moved on."
With Lindsay back on board, Forestville began looking like a dangerous team. Carter, Minter Cooper and Gwynn Park transfer Robbie Burton give the Knights an aggressive group of linebackers, and senior Rashad Maybin and junior Antonio Logan-El, who has committed to Maryland, make Forestville tough up front, too. Anthony has picked up the offense better than expected and Lindsay will be used all over the field -- at wide receiver, running back and quarterback.
"He'll be like we did with Jones last year," Harley said. "He'll be all over the place."
-- Josh Barr