2018 NFL Supplemental Draft Scouting Report: Sam Beal
Sam Beal, 6-0/187
Sam Beal Scouting Report By Charlie Campbell
Superb at tracking the ball
Good ball skills
Can battle big receivers
Could have issues with speed receivers
Can grab too much
Could have problems with pass interference penalties
Summary: The NFL is a passing-driven league, and there are always teams that need help at cornerback. Any elite NFL defense has at least three quality cornerbacks, and typically the teams have a fourth corner who is capable of playing if there is an injury. Thus, a cornerback with starting potential like Beal will be in demand in the 2018 Supplemental NFL Draft.
Beal played well over his final two collegiate seasons. In 2017, he had 26 tackles with two interceptions, one forced fumble and 10 passes broken up. He totaled 55 tackles with eight passes broken up as a sophomore. According to measurements from NFL teams, Beal checks in at 6-foot, 187 pounds with a 40-time of 4.50 seconds. They have him with 31-inch arms, 8.75-inch hands and a wingspan of 73.25 inches.
Beal has a lot going for him as a cover corner. In speaking with team sources, they felt that his ball-reaction skills were his best trait. Beal tracks the football extremely well while running downfield. He high points the ball and is adept at breaking up passes to prevent completions. Beal doesn't panic when the ball is coming toward him and is a real competitor with receivers. He is a physical corner with good length to take on big receivers. At his size, Beal has the ability to be an outside starter in the NFL.
There are some coverage issues that Beal needs to improve on, and that is why some teams sources thought he should have returned for his senior year. Beal can grab too much on receivers and be overly physical downfield. That could lead to issues with pass interference penalties as a pro. Beal needs to improve his skills to run with receivers without grabbing and holding them while running downfield. There also are some evaluators who question Beal's deep speed, and they have some concerns about him taking on elite deep threats. Thus, Beal could use some development in the NFL before being placed in the starting lineup.
Some team sources are very high on Beal and say he has first-round talent. Others say he is a legit second-round prospect, so the opinions on Beal are high for his on-field talents. However being a supplemental draft prospect, most sources thought he would end up being a mid-round pick with a range of the third through fifth round being said in survey of a handful of teams. Perhaps there is a team out there that will want to jump the other teams and is willing to give up a second-round pick, but the higher are odds are that Beal will go for a third- or fourth-rounder.
Player Comparison: David Amerson. Both Beal and Amerson have good size to them with impressive ball skills. Deep speed can be a problem for Amerson and could hurt Beal in the NFL
NFL Matches: Buffalo, Houston, New England, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Indianapolis, New Orleans, Kansas City, Seattle and San Francisco
There are a lot of teams that could be a fit for Beal. Buffalo lost E.J. Gaines and traded away Ronald Darby. After their trades up for Josh Allen and Tremaine Edmunds, the Bills were without picks to address corner in the 2018 NFL Draft.
The Texans have a need at corner as Jonathan Joseph and Kareem Jackson are declining veterans. Kevin Johnson is also nearing the end of his rookie contract as well. Houston needs more young talent at corner.
The Patriots could consider taking Beal. Malcolm Butler left in free agency, while Stephon Gilmore was disappointing in his first year in Foxborough. They drafted Duke Dawson in the 2018 NFL Draft, but he's a better fit in the slot. Beal would give them an option for an outside corner.
New England's Super Bowl opponent also could consider Beal. Philadelphia may not sign Ronald Darby to a long-term extension, and Beal could be selected as a potential replacement for the Eagles.
Kansas City badly needs some young outside cornerback talent. Kendall Fuller is good in the slot, but the Chiefs need a replacement for Marcus Peters.
Cleveland could use more young talent to pair with Denzel Ward. Ditto for the Colts with Quincy Wilson and the Saints with Marshon Lattimore. Seattle and San Francisco have had some additions and subtractions at cornerback, so neither team has a huge need at the position, but Beal is a great scheme fit for both teams, so either could have interest in using a late-round pick on him.