ORLANDO, Fla. – It was on Seminole High School’s football field where Gabriel Davis showed the first signs of the type of athlete he is.
“We definitely saw this coming for him,” said Eric Lodge, Davis’ former Seminole High School coach.
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Davis did what no other football player had done before in the 102 years of the NFL. He caught four touchdowns in a playoff game against the defending conference champion, the Kansas City Chiefs. The wide receiver is a former Knight and Seminole High School football star.
“We’ve been watching Gabe do this since he was in high school and we knew he could do it,” said Lodge, adding it was no surprise to see Davis’ performance and how he shined on football’s biggest stage with the Buffalo Bills.
“It’s something that’s special. It’s special for the community, it’s special for the kids that are still here,” Lodge said. “We were just so excited for him. We know all the hard work that he’s put in and the dedication that he has towards his craft and getting better every day.”
The Sanford native made a name for himself in college playing at the University of Central Florida, where he had a perfect season and a Peach Bowl win. Davis’ career vaulted him to the Bills in 2020.
“To see a guy like that-- you know make it to that level and do something that nobody’s ever done before. And it just lets them know that if they do things the right way and handle themselves that they could do it too,” his former coach said.
And when Davis isn’t out on the field, Lodge said he takes time to visit his high school.
“He was always a kid that was mature beyond his years and always set the example of how you know all the other guys should act,” Lodge recalled. “Whenever he’s around, we have him speak to the kids as much as possible.”