*Walt taking 2014 and 2018
Charlie Campbell, Senior Draft Analyst
Safety Could be Strong Position in 2024 NFL DraftUpdated July 10, 2023
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
As teams start getting acquainted with the talent for the 2024 NFL Draft, one position that has jumped out to team evaluators as being deep in talent is safety. Safety was one of the weaker positions for the 2023 NFL Draft. There were teams that had a first-round grade on Alabama’s Brian Branch, but a slow 40 time sent Branch to Round 2, and zero safeties were selected on the opening night of the draft. According to sources, the 2024 NFL Dcould have more candidates to consider for the opening night with depth extending into Day 2.
“There were a lot of good safeties that I studied,” said an AFC director of player personnel. “The ones that jumped out to me were Tyler Nubin (Minnesota), Kamren Kinchens (Miami), Javon Bullard (Georgia), Calen Bullock (USC), James Williams (Miami), and I would include Cooper DeJean (Iowa) as a safety. Kinchens is athletic, rangy, instinctive, and has ball skills. He reminds me of Kerby Joseph, who I think could end up being a stud for the Lions.”
Joseph had four interceptions and eight passes broken up as a rookie in Detroit. Kinchens was a ballhawk last year for Miami with six interceptions and five passes defended. DeJean played cornerback for Iowa, but he could move to safety as a pro, depending on how teams feel about what would be his best fit in coverage given his skill set.
Obviously, the 2024 NFL Draft is a long ways away and many players will rise and fall in the months to come, but heading into the 2023 college football season, it looks like safety could be a position of strength for the next draft.