Why the Slide?: Grant Delpit, S, LSU
By Charlie Campbell, @draftcampbell
Six years ago, we started a series of articles on why certain prospects went undrafted. In that series, I reach out to sources with NFL teams to find out why their organizations passed on drafting a given player, and/or, what were the reasons for other teams to pass on that prospect. We got a lot of positive reader feedback about the series, so we decided to expand in the genre to investigate why some prospects slid in the draft. Four years ago, we started the Why the Slide? series, and this year it is back. Feel free to email me requests for Why the Slide? and Why Undrafted? at firstname.lastname@example.org. I can't promise to get to all of them, but I will do my best and definitely will respond to the email.
Entering the 2020 NFL Draft process, LSU safety Grant Delpit was one of the most highly touted prospects, and the consensus projection had him as a future top-20 pick after Delpit recorded 74 tackles, 9.5 tackles for a loss, five sacks, nine passes batted and five interceptions in 2018. While LSU had a dream season in 2019, going undefeated and winning the National Championship, Delpit did not play as well, recording 59 tackles, two interceptions, one sack and seven passes broken up. He still decided to skip his senior year and did not work out before the 2020 NFL Draft.
In speaking to team sources, the consensus grade on Delpit around the league was on Day 2. Some had him graded in the second round, and some had him in the third round. Thus, Delpit did not have a real slide in the eyes of teams, with some feeling he was a reach in the second round.
The Cleveland Browns ended Delpit's fall in the second round, and that was a mixed landing spot for him. On the plus side, the Browns have a need at safety, so Delpit should compete for playing time immediately. On the negative side, the Browns have a terrible track record of developing talent and have had zero continuity with their coaching staff. A lack of continuity hurts the development of young players, and that falls squarely on the Haslams for yet another route the incompetent ownership has failed the fans.
The Browns also signed veteran Karl Joseph in free agency, and he is a better fit at strong safety in the NFL given his short height. Delpit could be forced into free safety, which is not a good fit for him. Delpit has some talent to work with, and it will be interesting to see if the Browns are capable of developing him.
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