2014 NFL Draft by Position: SafetyPosted on April 05, 2014 by Justin Ford
Jimmie Ward, Northern Illinois 5 foot 11 inches, 193 pounds
- Transitions from playing the deep zones to manning up on a slot receiver seamlessly. Solid change of direction when changing from lateral movement to forward attack. Every bit as fluid as the man most rank ahead of him, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.
Avery Patterson, Oregon 5 foot 10 inches, 190 pounds
- I don’t know why this player isn’t talked about in higher regard. His tape is tremendous. I am fairly certain this is the only place you while see Patterson ranked among the top five safeties, much less ahead of a guy that is talked about in the top 15 picks. Patterson is a converted corner who played safety for the Ducks the last two seasons. He is a willing tackler, but more importantly an intelligent tackler/run defender who understands how he fits into a defense. As a converted CB he is just as comfortable lining up in front of a receiver as he is lining up single high. Also has a knack for turning interceptions into points. In the last 2 season Patterson has 6 interceptions, returning 3 of them for touchdowns.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Alabama 6 foot 1 inch, 208 pounds
- Everyone’s favorite. Dix has the prototypical size for the position and played as a defensive centerpiece in one of the best defenses in college football. Does everything you could ever ask of him in coverage but lacks the trigger to make a lot of plays on the football.
Deone Bucannon, Washington State 6 foot 1 inch, 211 pounds
- More of a strong safety than a free safety. Bucannon navigates traffic very well the majority of the time but is too jumpy and hops around too often trying to elude blockers. If you catch him at the right time he can be taken completely out of a play.
Lamarcus Joyner, Florida State 5 foot 8 inches, 184 pounds.
- The closest thing to Tyrann Mathieu you are going to find in this years NFL Draft. The words “go-go gadget” arms have been used when describing Joyner’s ability to get is hands on the football. Throw out all the numbers (especially height) this dude just flat out plays football. I am pretty sure if you asked him to play defensive tackle he would find a way to do it well.