|Is the predator coming to the Broncos? Maybe, I really hope so, find out more below about the predator. On to this article now, last week we took a look at the Corner Back prospects. This week let’s have a look at the rest of the defensive backfield and analyse the Safeties that make up this draft class. Remember last week I mentioned Josh Barrett, man I miss that guy, wishing you the best. Moving on let’s take a look at the prospects that we could be in play for. Also like to note I think the value for safeties will be in the thrid round. A lot of these guys will go then, which is good for us.|
In other news though, prospect pro days are finishing up and teams begin to bring in players for private workouts. Denver has a number of the QBs coming in as well as a few linebackers too. Peterson has a private workout scheduled with us. It is interesting to see what sort of vibe these guys get from the workouts and who we will pick in the draft.
Time for the prospects...
Moore is long with a muscular build. Has excellent range to be a true centerfielder and cover the deep middle. Shows great awareness in zone coverage and the ability to recognize and jump routes. Possesses terrific hand-eye coordination and comes down with interceptions in traffic. Reads quickly, fills fast and does not shy away from contact in run support.
Read & React: Good instincts for the position. Reads the quarterback's eyes and has good feet, balance and straight-line speed, aiding him in being in consistently good position in coverage. Reads run quickly and is aggressive in downhill pursuit. Prone to overrunning the play and leaving potential cutback lanes for backs to exploit.
Man Coverage: Not often asked to drop down and cover the slot receiver, but shows quick feet, a low, tight backpedal and the straight-line speed to potentially handle this role in limited duty. Is a high-cut athlete and is a bit stiff in the hips, so he loses a step in his transition.
Zone Coverage: Good instincts and overall athleticism for zone coverage. Gains good depth due to his backpedal and can plant his foot in the ground and drive downhill on the ball. Good lateral agility and balance, despite his high-cut build and average hip flexibility to turn and run. Good acceleration and top-end speed to provide a safety net in deep coverage.
Tackling: Isn't always a reliable open-field tackler, a negative as the team's last line of defense. Generally breaks down well, but will alternately take on ballcarriers too high and try to wrestle them to the ground or drop his head and resort to duck-and-swipe tackling leading to ugly missed tackles. Is willing to lower his shoulder into the receiver crossing the middle, but is not an intimidating presence.
Intangibles: A respected team leader who was voted a captain as a junior. Started all three seasons at UCLA, including as a true freshman -- the first Bruin to do so since Matt Ware (now with the Arizona Cardinals) did back in 2001. Wrote a 2,058-word statement thanking everyone from his mother, high school and college coaches, teammates and fans to NFL standouts Kenny Easley and Ed Reed for their help in his development.
Carbon copy of McBath, smaller safety that excels in zone coverage. Problem is this is the type of Safety that Fox likes so he may be very interested in him early in the 2nd. I still like McBath if he can be healthy.
Read & React: Heady defender against the run and pass. Very quick to close on bubble screens whether lined up in man or coming down the hash. Capable of moving to the sideline quickly from the two-deep look, though he is sometimes a step late to recognize when the corner needs help. Comes off his coverage to close on the ball while it's in the air, often gets to the receiver as the ball arrives or a split second later.
Man Coverage: Athletic safety who can step up to play outside or in the slot, if needed. Asked to jump out on receivers on corner blitzes, can stay with them down the sideline or on the hot route over the middle. Needs work staying low and over his feet in his backpedal, as well as using his hands to prevent separation and knock receivers off their routes at the line.
Zone Coverage: Has the speed and playmaking ability to be an effective two-deep centerfielder. Closes to the ball in a hurry to make bone-jarring hits, forcing fumbles or incompletions. Owns good hands for the interception whether the ball is thrown at his numbers or in a jump-ball situation. Adjusts well to balls thrown behind him. Noses up against the run and when the quarterback scrambles, leaving his corner on an island if his man heads downfield. Late to get to the sideline at times, even when there is no threat of a run.
Closing/Recovery: Excellent closing speed to attack receivers and running backs in space. Plants and drives forward with a nice burst to the ball. Effective blitzer because of his speed and timing. Fair recovery speed and change-of-direction ability for a safety; can catch up to receivers if beaten on a quick initial move. Takes aggressive angles because of his speed, elusive NFL runners may take advantage of that.
Run Support: Headhunter in run support, attacking plays whether playing near the line or well off. Chases down ballcarriers from sideline to sideline. Willing to lower shoulder into lead blocks so others can make the play, but lacks great strength to take on linemen and disengage to make plays.
Tackling: Solid tackler who is a reliable last line of defense because of his athleticism and aggressive style. Is an intimidating presence, loves to lay the wood on the sideline and over the middle (will get penalized for big shots late, was actually thrown out of practices for being too jacked up). Will be the second or third man into the pile, forcing it backwards on most occasions by bringing his hips and keeping his feet moving. Comes in high on some tackles, grabbing shoulder pads and allowing shorter or stronger players to slip away.
Intangibles: Exceptional leader on the field and in the locker room. Receiving degree in sociology with a non-profit organization studies, but already has started has own non-profit called SOUL (Serving Others with Unity and Leadership) to help kids in the Las Vegas area. Redshirted the 2007 season with a severely pulled hamstring, also missed the beginning of the 2008 season with surgery on a slightly torn knee ligament.
I like Carter, he is a baller that brings the wood, but he lacks elite athleticism. I like him in the 3rd as I do many of the safeties.
Read & React: Reads his keys to sniff out running plays and quick screens. Instinctive, flies through traffic to get to stretch plays or plug holes inside. Good range but at times can be a step slow to find a receiver coming into his zone. Overaggressive and will overrun plays.
Man Coverage: Good athleticism for his size, can trail most tight ends into the flat or on crossing routes. Gets his hands on tight ends in coverage, but could draw contact flags in the NFL. Fair backpedal for a safety, can handle slot responsibility for short periods of time against four-receiver sets.
Zone Coverage: Played in a lot of two-deep coverage. Quick enough to reach the sideline on long throws, has the coordination to high-point the ball or knock it away. Good hands to take advantage of overthrows over the middle. Gets pulled out of his area at times, leaving space for the trailing receiver. Bites hard on good play-action.
Closing/Recovery: Underrated speed and good angles allow him to track down backs from behind. Will be an effective blitzer playing around the line. Adequate recovery speed for a safety if beaten by receivers but will not catch many NFL receivers from behind.
Tackling: Well-built upper body gives him excellent strength for the position. Goes for the big shoulder or forearm slam over the middle but still makes a grab for jersey to minimize yards after catch. Extends arms or lays strong shoulder hit to back heading out of bounds instead of merely escorting them. Can rip the ball out while wrapping. Effective cutting ballcarriers and making ankle tackles in the open field, though he should leave his feet less and keep his head up more often against NFL ballcarriers.
Intangibles: Vocal leader in the locker room. Puts in the time to prepare for next week's opponent. Demonstrative and talkative on the field. No known character concerns.
Sash fits the mold of a deep zone safety. And he has been known to make plays from back there. Not the fastest but shows good ability and makes up for his lack of speed with his great instincts. Again Sash in the 3rd is an option.
McDaniel is an outstanding blend of height, length, bulk and speed. Looks the part. Very productive player, with a flair for making the big play. Appears to be a well-prepared. Has good range in zone, can lay the wood or make a plays on the ball. Loves to play the run, fills in a hurry.
Is a bit high-cut and lacks some fluidity when attempting to mirror quicker receivers in coverage. Can get caught looking in the backfield at play fakes on occasion. Must watch his tackling technique at times. Was arrested in 2008 but is not a locker room personality problem.
Man Coverage: Asked to drop down and cover the slot receiver, at times, in this defense. Quick feet, good balance and surprising acceleration for the safety position. Doesn't change directions fluidly due to stiff hips, but accelerates quickly out his breaks and has good straight-line speed. As a result he is able to generate a late burst to close as the ball is in flight. Quick, active hands to bat away or intercept the pass.
Zone Coverage: A bit high in his backpedal, but generates good depth on his initial drop. Good lateral agility and gains speed quickly when changing directions. Does a nice job of recognizing routes and drifting laterally to remain in between the quarterback and his assignment. Reacts quickly to the thrown pass. Looks to help out his teammates.
Closing/Recovery: Good instincts, speed and a late burst as the ball is in flight make this one of his stronger areas. Locates the ball quickly and will abandon his prior assignment quickly once he sees the ball is headed elsewhere. Puts himself in position to be the fortunate teammate for a fumble recovery or tipped interception. High-points the ball, showing an impressive vertical jump and good timing.
Run Support: His experience as a linebacker/safety hybrid shows in his comfort near the line of scrimmage. Shows very good vision to locate the football when in traffic, as well as the balance and agility to keep his feet through the trash. Good speed and pursuit angles when shooting gaps downhill or in pursuit. Plays good team defense - is willing to break outside to the sideline to keep contain, funneling the ball-carrier back towards the rest of the defense.
Tackling: A reliable open-field tackler, who demonstrates shows some creativity in how he gets the ball-carrier to the ground. Likes to supply the big hit to intimidate his opponent. Willing to drop his shoulder and explode into the ball-carrier, creating some big hits. Generates some explosiveness as a wrap-up hitter, as well, opting to throw the ball-carrier to the ground, at times. Shows no hesitancy in taking on bigger ball-carriers.
Intangibles: Had a rough childhood and had to do some real maturing while at Clemson … Was raised by his grandmother and godmother … Has little contact with his biological parents. His mother, reportedly, has been arrested over 50 times … Was charged with high and aggravated assault on his former girlfriend in 2008. Accepted a pre-trial intervention and community service … Has since matured into an Honor Roll student and team captain. In 2009, he won a Vickery Hall award for academic improvement, earning a 3.25 GPA in the first semester and 3.0 in the second, and was named to the 2009-10 ACC Academic Honor Roll. Majoring in Sociology and will graduate in the winter of 2010 … Routinely spends extra hours on his own in the film-room during the season.
McD is a guy that has really turned it around. Solid player that is good in coverage and solid against the run. Not the fastest but gets to the ball and makes the tackle. Solid Special Teamer. McD is a Safety to watch in the future but for us I don’t think so, just doesn’t seem to fit. Plus his last name will probably have him removed off our draft board.
Combine 40 Time: 4.53 unofficial, 4.57 official.
Pro Day 40 Time: .
Bench: 12. Vertical: 35. Arm: 33 3/8.
Projected Round (2011): 3-5.
Date of birth: November 3, 1989 (age 21)
Sands is a tall, rangy, high-cut safety. Speed is better-than-average. Covers a lot of ground after reaching top speed. Can play the point or deep half. Huge catch radius and good hands to pull down the tough interception. Willing, aggressive and productive in run support and coverage over the middle. Sure-tackler. Displays solid awareness.
Like most high-cut athletes, suffers from some hip stiffness. Struggles a bit in transition. Not a good matchup against shifty slot receivers in man coverage. Instincts and ability to jump routes are adequate but still improving. Struggles to break down and make tackles in space at times.
Strengths: Tall, wiry but strong. Has speed to reach either sideline to prevent big plays. Length affects passing lanes on the blitz and running down the seam. Plays with attitude on every snap. Likes to make the big shoulder-first hit and churn his legs to stop ballcarriers' forward progress. Covers running backs on wheel routes and can handle tight ends in man coverage. Aggressive filling to stop the run, attacks plays behind the line when playing the box. Long arms allow him to wrap up most ballcarriers when technique is good. Fair ball skills and straight-line speed to intercept jump balls and late throws over the middle.
Height: 6-2. Weight: 205.
Hand Size: 10 in.
Projected 40 Time: 4.45.
Combine 40 Time: DNP.
Pro Day 40 Time: .
Projected Round (2011): 3-5.
Date of birth: November 21, 1987 (age 23)
Man Coverage: Doesn't appear to have the man-to-man skills to effectively drop down and cover the slot receiver. Loses a step in his transition despite loose hips. Normal acceleration, though he appears to have good speed overall for the position. Uses his hands to ride the receiver and prevent separation. Competitive defender who believes the ball is his. Has excellent ball skills.