Updated June 23, 2016
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
In recent years, there was a trend in the NFL to downgrade the safety position. Many safeties, running backs, and non-pass-rushing linebackers were pushed down draft boards as the league trended more towards the passing game. Some safeties were making it into the first round, but many players were slipping to Day 2 who would have been first-rounders if they played a decade or two earlier. In speaking to some team sources, however, they feel that safeties are figuring more into the first round conversation for teams. They point to the Raiders' Karl Joseph and Falcons' Keanu Neal both going in the top 20 of the 2016 NFL Draft. One prospect they believe will follow suit as a top-20 pick is LSU safety Jamal Adams.
Sources say that the 6-foot-1, 211-pound Adams looks like an exciting player with his size and coverage skills. As a sophomore, he had six passes broken up and four interceptions. He has versatile size to cover big receivers or tight ends and tackle in the ground game. Adams had 67 tackles last year and that mirrored his freshman year of 66 stops.
In speaking to some sources from a playoff team that has every reason to believe they will be in the postseason again, they say that Adams is going to be gone by the time they are on the clock. Their early impression is that Adams is on par with Joseph and Neal as a top-20 talent. If Adams has a big junior season, he could be a high first-rounder.