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DRAFT PROSPECTS: Late Round/UDFA Free Safeties

NFL Draft DRAFT PROSPECTS: Late Round/UDFA Free Safeties

Posted in NFL Draft
2+ Comments Zach Wilt says "Thomas played very physical during his time in the ACC." This means nothing. Possibly the most vague sentence of all time.
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As a part of our coverage here at Russell Street Report, we’ll be featuring the best prospects all across the board in any situation the Ravens might come across. Whether it’s a receiver in the first round, a quarterback in the sixth, or a guard in the third, we’ll cover the Ravens best options in any scenario.

Barring any trades, the team will pick in the middle of each round—so we’ll see who is available when the Ravens are projected to select their upcoming stars. This will make it easy for you the fan to look at what the Ravens are seeing in future NFL prospects.

Click Here for Interior O-Line Prospect Analysis

Click Here for Wide Receiver Prospect Analysis

Click Here for Round 1 Free Safety Prospects

Click Here for Round 2 Free Safety Prospects

Click Here for Round 3 Free Safety Prospects

Click Here for Round 4 Free Safety Prospects

Click Here for Rounds 5-6 Free Safety Prospects

We’ve gone through some great prospects thus far in our free safety series. It’s likely that Ozzie Newsome will make it a priority to take a free safety early, meaning that any safety taken at this part of the draft won’t be expected to start immediately (if ever). Like so many other positions however, there is depth in this class. Here are a few potential backup options that could fight for a roster spot with a strong performance in training camp.

Ty Zimmerman, Kansas State

Standing at 6’1”, 200+, Zimmerman certainly looks the part.

While he won’t be looked at until late in Day Three, his phone may be ringing as the draft nears a close. Even if he isn’t drafted, he’ll likely be invited to camp somewhere.

There’s cause for concern about Zimmerman’s speed. While he is athletic and has the ability to attack the ball-carrier, there’s no question that he just doesn’t have elite straight-line speed. Because of this, he has to diagnose plays early, something that he does well. He often seemed to have a step in coverage before the route was run.

Zimmerman can and will make plays. He had seven interceptions in his last two seasons at K-State.

Tackling is something that became a strong point in his game during his senior season. The big safety was able to not only engage with ball-carriers, but stick with them and finish the play. As a developmental/special teams player, there’s definitely reason to believe that Zimmerman has potential.

Jemea Thomas, Georgia Tech

While he’s anything but a “sure thing,” Thomas might end up being a very good value at the end of the draft.

The very undersized (5-9) Thomas played very physical during his time in the ACC. He isn’t afraid to play all around and certainly won’t leave anything on the field. He “plays like a Raven.”

Thomas has raw talent, though not polished skills. Whether it’s in coverage or tackling, he never seems to key in on what he wants to do. Too often will he misjudge plays while they’re happening. However, his speed and power allows him to make impact tackles with regularity.

Here’s what CBS draft guru Dane Brugler had to say about Thomas:

STRENGTHS: Fluid athlete with the footwork to cover a lot of ground and puts himself in good position with his natural awareness to read/react quickly. Plays aggressive and physical for his size, and has exhibited impressive versatility, providing depth at safety and cornerback early in his career before taking over at the starting rover position in 2012 and leading the team with four interceptions that year.

Exhibits physical nature and strength to finish when around the football. Has some experience as a punt returner.

WEAKNESSES: May be questions regarding his durability at the next level, considering his physical play style in combination with his smaller size.

 

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Joe Wedra

About Joe Wedra

Joe is an NFL enthusiast that spends way too much time studying tape, but he wouldn't want it any other way. Joe can be found on Twitter @JoeWedra, where he'll tweet out everything from Ravens analysis to scouting reports on Division II offensive line prospects...all for the love of the game! More from Joe Wedra
2 comments
Zach Wilt
Zach Wilt

"Thomas played very physical during his time in the ACC." This means nothing. Possibly the most vague sentence of all time.

Boldin Raver
Boldin Raver

Anybody consider the possibility that last year's UFA, Trawick, May be the guy? I know fans are still pissed at the whole Jacoby thing but let it go! How would you feel opening the NFL season and couple months ago you were one in a million to even be on a team. The thing is he made that team over some tough competition. He looked very athletic and coach commented about how he covers ground. Maybe he's the secret weapon?

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