2018 NFL Draft Prospects: Safeties



By Charlie Campbell.
Send Charlie an e-mail here: draftcampbell@gmail.com
Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell for updates.

The top 2018 Safety prospects available for the 2018 NFL Draft. * - denotes 2019 prospect. ** - denotes 2020 prospect.

This page was last updated Sept. 16, 2017. Follow Walter @walterfootball for updates.
2017 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P

2018 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P

2019 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P


  1. Derwin James*, S, Florida State
    Height: 6-3. Weight: 211.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.50.
    Projected Round (2018): 1.

    9/16/17: The Seminoles had their game against Louisian-Monroe canceled and next week's game against Miami moved to October 7th because of Hurricane Irma. While James didn't have a flawless performance against Alabama, it was good overall with six tackles and .5 sacks. James was healthy and able to display his great instincts and rare combination of great size, speed, physicality and versatility. He played dime linebacker, nickel corner, free safety and strong safety, doing everything a coach could ask of him. The Week 1 tape will be a net positive for James to end up being a high first-round pick.

    Prior to the season, scouting sources said that they had James as an overall top-three talent for the 2018 NFL Draft - regardless of position. Sources from around the league feel that James is a stud defender who has transcendent ability for what he can do for a defense.

    7/24/17: Entering the 2016 season, there was hype that James was an elite player and perhaps the best defensive player in college football. James totaled 11 tackles through two games in 2016 before suffering a season-ending knee injury. As a freshman in 2015, James had a strong debut with 91 tackles, 9.5 tackles for a loss, 4.5 sacks, four passes broken up, two forced fumbles and zero interceptions. He has a great athletic skill set.






  2. Minkah Fitzpatrick*, S, Alabama
    Height: 6-1. Weight: 203.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.55.
    Projected Round (2018): 1.

    9/16/17: Fitzpatrick made two tackles against Fresno State. In Week 1, he was beaten for a jump ball in the end zone by Florida State wide receiver Auden Tate. The 6-foot-5 wideout jumped above Fitzpatrick to make the short touchdown catch in the corner of the end zone. Otherwise, Fitzpatrick played well, covering receivers downfield, staying around the ball, and helping out his cornerbacks. Fitzpatrick notched five tackles in the season opener.

    7/24/17: In 2016, Fitzpatrick recorded 66 tackles with seven passes broken up and six interceptions. He was dominant at times for Alabama, splitting time between corner and safety. Fitzpatrick had a superb 2015 season for the Crimson Tide. The freshman totaled 45 tackles with two sacks, 11 passes broken up and two interceptions - both returned for a touchdowns.

    The 6-foot-1, 203-pounder has excellent size and some natural cover skills. He has a ton of upside to develop. It sounds as if his preference and natural position is safety.


  3. Ronnie Harrison*, S, Alabama
    Height: 6-3. Weight: 216.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.59.
    Projected Round (2018): 1-2.

    9/16/17: In 2017, Harrison has 13 tackles with a sack. He played well against Florida State in the season opener.

    7/24/17: Harrison had a strong 2016 season for Alabama with 86 tackles, seven passes broken up and two interceptions. He notched two interceptions and six breakups as a freshman in 2015. As a junior, Harrison could take his game to another level. Scouting sources say that Harrison's physical talent is incredible.


  4. Jordan Whitehead*, S, Pittsburgh
    Height: 5-11. Weight: 190.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.45.
    Projected Round (2018): 1-3.

    9/16/17: Whitehead is on a three-game suspension to start the 2017 season. That suspension really hurt his team in Week 2 as the Panthers really missed him against Penn State.

    7/24/17: Whitehead is a physical safety who has good instincts. He broke out as a freshman with 108 tackles, six passes broken up, one interception and one forced fumble. In 2016, Whitehead had 65 tackles with two breakups and an interception while missing multiple games with an arm injury. Scouting sources like Whitehead, and if he were bigger, he might be a sure-fire first-rounder.




  5. Armani Watts, S, Texas A&M
    Height: 5-11. Weight: 195.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.53.
    Projected Round (2018): 2-3.

    9/16/17: Watts has 19 tackles with two passes broken up and two forced fumbles thus far in 2017. He was impressive against UCLA in the season opener with 13 tackles, two passes batted and a forced fumble. Watts is an instinctive defender who was all over the field. However, he struggled in man coverage on Bruins tight end Caleb Wilson.

    7/24/17: Watts made a lot of clutch plays for the Aggies in 2016. He had 56 tackles with six for a loss, two forced fumbles, three passes broken up and two interceptions on the year. Watts totaled 126 tackles with two passes broken up and one interception in 2015. Like teammate Myles Garrett, Watts was an impressive freshman who was impossible to ignore in 2014. He totaled 59 tackles with nine passes broken up and three interceptions that season.

    Watts has displayed some instincts and play-making skills with free safety potential for the NFL with his ability to contribute in pass coverage. He could stand to improve his tackling, but has flashed the ability to make tackles in space.


  6. Van Smith, S, Clemson
    Height: 5-11. Weight: 195.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.60.
    Projected Round (2018): 2-4.

    9/16/17: Smith injured his knee in the season opener against Kent State, and that caused him to miss Week 2.

    7/24/17: Smith was the best safety for Clemson in 2016 as the program had to replace both of its starting safeties from the 2015 season. He totaled 96 tackles with 5.5 for a loss, two passes broken up and two interceptions. Smith could be even better in 2017 now that he has a year of experience.


  7. Dominick Sanders, S, Georgia
    Height: 6-0. Weight: 189.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.58.
    Projected Round (2018): 3-4.

    9/16/17: Sanders has six tackles with two passes broken up at this point in 2017.

    7/24/17: In 2016, Sanders totaled 34 tackles, seven passes broken up and three interceptions. Sanders had a huge 2015 season in pass coverage. On the year, the sophomore had six interceptions with six passes broken up. He also chipped in 48 tackles. Sanders showed his ball skills as a freshman with three picks and five passes broken up.

    Sanders flashes but lacks consistency. Getting stronger and improving his tackling production could help him as a senior.


  8. Marcus Allen, S, Penn State
    Height: 6-2. Weight: 205.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.63.
    Projected Round (2018): 3-4.

    9/16/17: So far in 2017, Allen has 15 tackles with two passes broken up.

    7/24/17: Allen was a really good run defender for Penn State in 2016 as he totaled 110 tackles with six for a loss and three passes broken up. He did have zero interceptions and will need to change that as a senior or a lack of ball skills will be part of his draft report. Allen had 81 tackles as a sophomore and 58 tackles as a freshman. He didn't snag any interceptions in either of those seasons.




  9. Damon Webb, S, Ohio State
    Height: 5-11. Weight: 195.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.50.
    Projected Round (2018): 3-4.

    9/16/17: Webb has 15 tackles thus far this year.

    7/24/17: Webb broke into the starting lineup for Ohio State in 2016 and had a solid season as the strong safety next to Malik Hooker. Webb totaled 57 tackles with three passes broken up and one interception on the season. It will be interesting to see if Webb can show the versatility to play free safety with Hooker in the NFL.


  10. Donnie Miles, S, North Carolina
    Height: 5-11. Weight: 210.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.62.
    Projected Round (2018): 3-4.

    9/16/17: Miles has 19 tackles and an interception to start the season.

    7/24/17: Miles notched 102 tackles and two passes broken up on the season in 2016. He put together a huge 2015 season for the Tar Heels in terms of run defense and was one of their best players. Miles totaled 128 tackles on the season, but had zero interceptions and two passes broken up. He notched one breakup, zero picks and 53 tackles as a freshman.


  11. Jamar Summers*, S/CB, Connecticut
    Height: 6-0. Weight: 190.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.56.
    Projected Round (2017): 3-4.

    9/16/17: Summers has 11 tackles with three passes broken up on the season.

    9/1/17: During 2016, Summers totaled 59 tackles with nine passes broken up and two interceptions while splitting time between cornerback and safety. Summers had a big 2015 season for Connecticut with eight interceptions, three passes broken up and 39 tackles. Given his position flexibility, Summers may end up being a coverage free safety in the NFL who also can play some man coverage on receivers.




  12. Cole Reyes, S, North Dakota
    Height: 6-2. Weight: 215.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.54.
    Projected Round (2017): 3-5.

    9/16/17: Reyes has 13 tackles thus far this year.

    7/24/17: Scouting sources say that Reyes is on their watch lists for the 2018 NFL Draft. He is said to have received a 5.7 grade from National, and that translates to an estimation of a high fourth-round grade heading into his senior year. 2016 was a productive season for Reyes and the Fighting Hawks. He totaled three interceptions, two forced fumbles, eight passes broken up, 1.5 sacks, 6.5 tackles for a loss and 70 tackles on the year. Reyes is said to have a starter's combination of size and speed for a NFL safety.


  13. Godwin Igwebuike, S, Northwestern
    Height: 6-0. Weight: 200.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.59.
    Projected Round (2018): 4-6.

    9/16/17: Thus far in 2017, Igwebuike has 16 tackles with one pass broken up.

    7/24/17: In 2016, Igwebuike totaled 108 tackles with seven passes broken up and two interceptions. Igwebuike was a good contributor in 2015 for a tough Northwestern defense. On the year, he totaled 87 tackles with five breakups. Igwebuike had three interceptions and 51 tackles as a freshman.


  14. Quin Blanding, S, Virginia
    Height: 6-1. Weight: 215.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.62.
    Projected Round (2018): 4-6.

    9/16/17: Blanding has 24 tackles this season. He is a good run defender but faces some limitations in pass coverage for the NFL.

    7/24/17: Blanding had 120 tackles with six passes broken up and two interceptions in 2016. In 2015, he recorded 115 tackles with an interception and three passes batted. Blanding had the most tackles of any freshman in college football in 2014 with 123 stops. He also notched three interceptions and six passes defensed.

    For the NFL, Blanding is more of a strong safety type. He has issues with taking some poor angles and pass-coverage limitations.


  15. Trey Marshall, S, Florida State
    Height: 6-0. Weight: 210.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.58.
    Projected Round (2018): 4-6.

    9/16/17: Marshall had three tackles with one for a loss on the year.

    7/24/17: In 2016, Marshall totaled 58 tackles with four passes broken up and zero interceptions. He had 21 tackle as a sophomore and 12 as a freshman backup. Marshall has the skill set to produce more.


  16. Steven Parker, S, Oklahoma
    Height: 6-1. Weight: 201.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.63.
    Projected Round (2018): 5-7.

    9/16/17: In 2017, Parker has eight tackles with a pass broken up.

    7/24/17: In 2016, Parker totaled 63 tackles with two interceptions and four passes broken up. He recorded 60 tackles with four passes broken up in 2015 after contributing 31 tackles with six breakups as a freshman.


  17. Nick Washington, S, Florida
    Height: 6-0. Weight: 197.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.53.
    Projected Round (2018): 5-7.

    9/16/17: Washington has nine tackles thus far in 2017.

    7/24/17: Washington replaced Keanu Neal for the Gators in 2016 and was a solid defender for Florida. He notched 45 tackles with one interception and a pass broken up. The Gators will need him to improve as a senior with Marcus Maye having moved on to the NFL.


  18. Tyree Robinson, S, Oregon
    Height: 6-4. Weight: 205.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.64.
    Projected Round (2018): 5-7.

    9/16/17: On the season, Robinson has two tackles and an interception.

    7/24/17: Robinson recorded 53 tackles, one interception and six passes broken up in 2016. In 2015, he notched 64 tackles with three interceptions and five passes broken up. Robinson has good length to him.


  19. Jaleel Wadood*, S, UCLA
    Height: 5-10. Weight: 175.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.69.
    Projected Round (2017): 5-7.

    9/16/17: Wadood has 11 tackles with three interceptions thus far in 2017.

    7/24/17: Wadood totaled 77 tackles with four passes broken up in 2016. He had an impressive 2015 season for UCLA with 72 tackles, four breakups and two interceptions. Wadood needs to add more size to his frame for tackling in the NFL.




  20. Drue Tranquill, S, Notre Dame
    Height: 6-1. Weight: 225.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.65.
    Projected Round (2018): 5-7.

    9/16/17: So far this year, Tranquill has nine tackles with an interception.

    7/24/17: Notre Dame's defense had a horrible 2016 season, but Tranquill held his own as he totaled 80 tackles with two passes broken up and an interception. He has the skill skill set and upside to produce more in 2017.


  21. Evan Berry, S, Tennessee
    Height: 5-11. Weight: 207.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.62.
    Projected Round (2018): 6-FA.

    9/16/17: Berry hasn't produced on defense yet in 2017. He has two kick returns for 86 yards this season.

    7/24/17: Berry notched just 12 tackles in 2016, but performed really well on kick returns. He averaged 32.9 yards per kick return with one touchdown. Unless he has a breakout year as a safety, for the NFL, he looks like just a return specialist. Berry was a phenomenal kick returner in 2015 for Tennessee with three touchdowns and a ridiculous average of 38.3 yards per kick return. As a freshman and sophomore, he combined for 23 tackles on defense.


  22. Ed Paris, S, LSU
    Height: 6-0. Weight: 210.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.54.
    Projected Round (2018): 7-FA.

    9/16/17: On the year, Paris has three tackles and three passes broken up.

    7/24/17: Paris has been a backup and rotational defender who should take on a bigger role with Jamal Adams and Tre'Davious White moving on to the NFL. Paris could rise as a senior. Paris has 17 tackles in his career and also is a contributor on special teams.


2017 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P

2018 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P

2019 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P




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