The Tippett family marks a staple around the New England football community. Andre Tippett, a Hall of Fame linebacker who played 11 seasons with the Patriots, established roots in the area through his own career and his continued work in community relations in his post-playing career.
With the family instilled in New England, another Tippett is well on his way to further impacting football in New England. On May 1, Coby Tippett received a minicamp invitation from the Patriots. The program starts May 13 as Tippett begins his path with aspirations of eventually making an NFL roster.
While playing with an organization with the Patriots’ track record can intimidate young players, Tippett is no stranger to making plays all throughout New England. Dating back to his high school career, Tippett was an anchor in the secondary for Xaverian Brothers High School in Westwood, Mass.
“He was obviously a kid that had very good athleticism and football instincts,” said former Xaverian head coach Charlie Stevenson. “With each progressive year, he continued to accentuate both of those attributes.”
Playing on both offense and defense, Coby’s speed electrified fields on Friday nights for a Hawks team that built a dominant program in the early 2010s. The team won back-to-back state championships in 2014 and 2015.
For teams that advance to the MIAA State Championships, the opportunity to win a title also comes with the chance to play at Gillette Stadium.
“It was a phenomenal performance and I think he validated everyone’s opinion that he was the best player in the state of Massachusetts that year,” Stevenson said.
Tippett’s 2015 performance under the lights capped off a remarkable high school career. In a 44-14 win over Central Catholic, Coby posted a multi-score game on offense before sealing the win with an 88-yard interception return for a touchdown.
“The one play that I remember that day was towards the end of the game, he made a pick six,” Stevenson said. “It was a fitting conclusion for his Xaverian career to return the pick six for a touchdown and come to the sideline having won a championship in Gillette Stadium where hopefully he can show people he can play at another level.”
The championship performance earned Tippett recognition from ESPNBoston as Mr. Football for the 2015 season.
Following his high school career, Tippett played a post-grad year at Cheshire Academy before making the jump to division one football at Towson University in the Colonial Athletic Association. In three seasons with the Tigers, Tippett played in nineteen games over his seasons before posting a breakout season in 2019. In that season, Tippett logged 70 tackles and five interceptions to make the All-CAA third team as a safety.
Following the season, the Sharon, Mass. native found his way back to the New England region when he transferred to the University of Rhode Island. Over two seasons, the defensive back tallied 50 tackles with four interceptions, while also finding the end zone once as a punt returner.
Tippett received accolades for his performance, making the All-CAA second team in 2020. In 2021, Tippett made the All-CAA third team as a safety and the All-CAA first team as a returner.
Tippett’s versatility in multiple facets provides an advantage for him to capitalize on this opportunity with the Patriots. He looks to build on his legacy in the region when minicamp opens in under two weeks.
“His instincts allow him to make those quick, agile movements that you need in football to make those plays,” Stevenson said. “I think he can contribute in the special teams aspects that they do in addition to defense. He’s one of those players, from what I hear, that the Patriots like who have versatility. Hopefully, those things shine through for him, and they’ll find a spot for him.”