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2014 Draft
Strong Safeties
This page will be a work in progress and updated frequently. Come back often and watch it develop.

1 Deone Bucannon SS 24 Washington State Sr 6010 211 2nd

Combine Forty: 4.49...USA "small school sleeper"...Physical run-thru defender who racked up 6 picks...3forced fumbles and 4.5 tackles-for-losses...Likes contact; punishing tackler..."old school" safety...some stiffness in the hips...could improve man coverage skills...Check his agility combine numbers...built like a corner/hits like a safety.

Pro Day - Stood on his elite combine numbers....had good positional workout but dropped a couple of throws...experienced/strong tackler....

Combine (DB10) - Arm: 32 3/8; Hand: 9 3/4; BP: 19; VJ: 36.5; BJ: 125; 3C: 6.96; 20S: 4.26.

Senior Bowl - Looked good early in week due to his ability to close on the ball and set pads on contact - can "get off the numbers in Cover 2 or drop into the box vs. the run...Whether he can consistently take proper angles in the open field or cover the TE remains to be seen, but he is a deluxe hitter...

2 Ahmad Dixon SS 48 Baylor SR 6000 212 2nd-3rd

Combine Forty: 4.64...Enforcer...Proto measurables and above average top speed (Improved forty time at Pro Day)...Good zone-filling safety who hits like a LB...Pretty durable in recent years...Passionate and vocal leader...great in weight room...more instinctive in run support than in coverage at this point....makes quick diagnosis vs. run...pretty good movement skills in coverage with very good closing burst ("when pointed in the right direction average ball skills...above average ability to turn, locate and play the ball...excels in run support...lines up frequently in or near the box...tackles with quality pad-level, though he'll occasionally lunge and whiff...

Pro Day - Forty: 4.48 & 4.50...VJ: 34"; BJ: 9-3; 20S: 4.36; 3C: 7.28...Brandt says he worked out better here than at the combine and says he did a good job of finding and catching the ball....

Combine (DB18)- Arm: 32 1/4; Hand: 9 7/8; BP: 14; VJ: 32.0; BJ: 111; 3C: 7.55; 20S: 4.50; 60S: 12.01.....

3 Craig Loston SS 50 LSU rSr 5110 217 3rd-4th

Combine Forty: 4.65..."Physical, downhill, blowup tackler" vs. run...Good ball skills for a safety...doesn't power-down effort-wise...Could he be another addition to the Cardinals-LSU connection?...Proto measurables/average speed...Durability issues - hand and wrist surgery, concussion, turf toe...Solid work ethic...gradually assuming more of a leadership role in secondary...Loves the game...Excellent instincts and recognition in run support...must improve eye-discipline...a bit high cut and tight in hips...more natural breaking forward than in turning and going...better than average playmaking skill...natural hands and good body control...Enforcer in run support...Explosive big hitter with good body control though he'll sometimes drop his head and miss...

Pro Day - VJ: 32"...Brandt says he had a good workout; most notably "he cut his hair" (making him look "sharper and quicker")...Improved his draft position (probably late 2nd/early 3rd round)....

Combine (DB38) - Arm: 30 3/4; Hand: 9 3/4; BP: 12; VJ: 32.5; BJ: 119; 3C: 7.15; 20S: 4.35....

4 Jimmie Ward SS 68 No. Illinois Sr 5110 193 2nd

Est. Forty: 4.60...Loves the game...always around ball...will sacrifice body to take out lead-blocker...shorter than ideal...faster than combine time......

Pro Day - Ward was main attraction of day...Forty: 4.47 & 4.48...VJ:38"; BJ: 10-5; 20S: 4.24; 3C: 6.89; Will have foot surgery this week and be out of action for the next six (meaning that today was the day for scouts to take a close look)...Brandt sees him being drafted early in the second round...

 Senior Bowl - Fits the growing trend at SS away from physical head-hunters and toward free safety type centerfielders...Brooks was impressed with Ward's athleticism,movement skills and anticipation as a centerfielder in one-in one and team drills - he closed quickly and displayed the range to get over the top on deep throws...

Combine (DB56) - Arm: 31; Hand: 9 3/8; BP: 9.

9 Isaiah Lewis SS 151 Michigan State Sr 5100 211 5th

Combine Forty: 4.60...Tough, athletic...good instincts...explosive hitter...a tad short but has adequate bulk and decent speed...Durable...3-year starter with clean intangibles...Can break early to leave assignment and make a play on the ball but can also be suckered by play-action and get embarrassed deep...Fast enough to play centerfield when he makes the right read and play the deep half, but frame will betray him in matchups with TE's and he's fluid enough to cover some (but not all) slot receivers...tracks ball well and catches away from frame but he's not big and strong enough to win most jump ball battles...Tough vs. run but lacks the size and strength to be a traditional SS...needs to work on man coverage skills/footwork...

Pro Day - 20S: 4.28; 3C: 6.83...; no comments on position workout......

Combine (DB37) - Arm: 31 1/2; Hand: 9 5/8; BP: 15; VJ: 36.5; BJ: 122; 3C: 7.05; 20S: 4.47...

11 Hakeem Smith SS 182 Louisville rSr 6010 180 6th

Est. Forty: 4.60.....Lines up deep...lacks straight-line speed...has slender build...

Pro Day - Happy with his position workout performance...Local paper says he bench pressed 25 times and had a 37.5" VJ...considered a bit undersized for position but proved he can be physical and excel in the box...says he's reliable/consistent and takes pride in being the "last man back" on defense...

5 Alden Derby SS 107 Arizona State Sr 5110 195 6th-7th

Est. Forty: 4.45...Fierce in run support....good wrap up tackler...good deep ball range...a bit short....but his 4.45 speed is impressive for a safety...This guy sounds more like a chunky CB than he does a SS...Slightly small measurables for a SS but very good speed...Durable...Vocal leader on and off the field...Film rat.. comes from a tough upbringing...well-liked by coaches and teammates...adequate but inconsistent recognition skills - "better athlete than FB player" - ESPN...Outstanding cover skills/centerfielder level range...upper echelon closing burst...good ball skills (climbing the ladder/high-pointing the ball) but lack of size puts him at a disadvantage vs. big physical receivers...lacks aggression in run support and is more a wrap and drag-down tackler....

Pro Day - No info from nfl, the guides or local press.....

10 Sean Parker SS 173 Washington Sr 5100 195 7thEst. Forty: ...

 Est. Forty: 4.55...Reliable vs. the run and in coverage but lacks elite speed, size and athleticism...Undersized...average speed...Fairly durable...Elected team captain in 2012.."adequate" (!@#$) work ethic...Loves football....Decent vs. run/less-so vs. pass...Brings a physical presence but can be overaggressive at times...can cover most TE's but may struggle vs. quicker slot receivers....aggressive enough in coverage but has average ball skills...average run defender (has the will and the ability but takes poor angles in open field)....

Pro Day - Lots of footage but no meaningful info.......

7 Brock Vereen SS 121 Minnesota Sr 6000 199 7th-FA

Combine Forty: 4.47...Athletic...Elite speed...Good leaping ability and ball skills....Strong...Good route recognition but tiny hands, short arms and insufficient bulk... (which begs the question of this offseason - can he play corner)?...

Pro Day - Stood on his combine numbers and did position drills only...

Combine (DB54)- Arm: 30; Hand 8 1/4; BP: 25; VJ: 34.0; BJ: 117; 3C: 6.90; 20S: 4.07...

8 Nat Berhe SS 147 San Diego State rSr 5100 193 7th-FA

Combine Forty: 4.71 (Pro Day Forty: 4.55)...Instinctive...nose for ball..."plays fast"...active and energetic...smart...aggressive tackler...but lacks size (short arms/small hands) and will sometimes play undisciplined...Improved forty time has to help his rating...

Pro Day - Forty: 4.55 & 4.56; VJ: 35"; BJ: 9-10; BP: 17; 20S: 4.42; 3C: 7.32.....

Combine (DB06) - Arm: 30 5/8; Hand: 8 1/2; BP: 15; VJ: 35.5; BJ: 117; 3C: 7.08; 20S: 4.22..

6^ Dezmaen Southward SS 115 Wisconsin RSr 6000 211 7th-FA

Est. Forty: 4.50...Before his pro day, this guy profiled well for a mid-to-late round Cardinal pick due to his upside. Now (given his elite forty and VJ numbers) I don't think you can hide him past the first day...Nice size/speed numbers...Durable...Didn't play organized FB til senior year in HS...Athletic family..Played a lot of off-coverage this past season....Inexperience undermines his instincts/recognition skills...Can be an effective centerfielder when he makes sound reads...adequate hip fluidity and man-cover upside...Has enough foot speed and and length to match up with most "F" TE's and some (but not all) slot receivers...Not a natural ballhawk but has some upside there...needs to improve coverage skills...Downhill striker and big hitter who's big and strong enough to play in the box...

Pro Day - Forty: 4.38 & 4.41..BJ: 10 -4; VJ 42"; 20S: 4.41; 60S: 11.50; 3C: 6.50...

Combine (DB51) - Arms; 30 5/8; Hand: 10; TBD...

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