Antone Exum, FS

School: Virginia Tech  |  Conference: ACC
College Experience: Senior  |  Hometown: Glen Allen, VA
Height/Weight: - / - lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.

Player Lowdown

Combine Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
Workout Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
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Mock Draft Expert Analysis

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Player Overview

Given the increasing complexity of passing attacks in the NFL, hybrid defensive backs capable of lining up in man coverage or dropping back deep in more of a traditional safety role have never held more value. Given Exum's experience at free safety, rover and cornerback, that might be music to his ears.

Exum initially worked at free safety with the Hokies, playing in all 14 games and starting five in 2010 after redshirting his first season on campus. His first of two consecutive All-ACC campaigns also came primarily at free safety in 2011, when he led Virginia Tech with 89 tackles and posted 10 passes broken up, two forced fumbles and an interception.

Exum's star really began to ascend in 2012 when he made the transition to cornerback and enjoyed his most prolific campaign, leading the team with five interceptions, amongst 16 passes broken up.

Unfortunately, 2013 was a nightmare for Exum as he suffered a torn ACL and lateral meniscus in his right knee while playing in a pickup basketball game in January. When he was able to return late in the season, Exum suffered a second injury - a sprained left ankle - which sidelined him for the remainder of the year. Exum's senior campaign was limited to just three games in which he record four tackles and one pass defended.

Strengths Weaknesses

STRENGTHS: Looks the part of an NFL safety, boasting broad shoulders and a thick frame, overall. Possesses a low, quick backpedal and fluid turning motion. Accelerates smoothly, showing good athleticism and straight-line speed to handle man coverage duties.

Size and explosive leaping ability make him a difficult matchup for receivers in jump-ball situations. Shows good hand-eye coordination to knock away the ball once he locates it in the air. Flashes physicality as a hitter, as well as the vision and speed to take proper angles in pursuit.

Highly versatile defender with experience playing three different positions in a pro-style scheme that has produced a number of NFL defensive backs. Quality special teams performer who projects well as a defender on kick and punt coverage units. Graduated with a degree in finance and is working on a second degree in marketing.

WEAKNESSES: At his best when facing the quarterback. Loses track of the ball, too often face-guarding the receiver when locked up in man coverage on the perimeter. Inconsistent angles to the ball, as well as physicality when tackling. Will lower his shoulder and lunge, on occasion, rather than seeing his target and breaking down properly.

NFL teams will want to know why he elected not to play earlier in 2013 as his knee was cleared by the renowned surgeon Dr. James Andrews on September 30 and, according to his official bio, "opted not to play."

COMPARES TO: Charles Godfrey, Carolina Panthers - Godfrey was a standout cornerback at Iowa prior to making the transition to safety in the NFL. Exum possesses a similar frame and athleticism and flashes the toughness to handle this move, should that be the position his NFL teams feels he projects best. Regardless of his position, Exum boasts a unique blend of size and athleticism to intrigue but teams will have to be convinced of his health and dedication towards improvement.

--Rob Rang

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Player News
05/12/2014 - A closer look at the Vikings' picks: Round 6/182 - Antone Exum, DB, 6-0, 213, Virginia Tech...After trading down twice from 148 and 168, the Vikings took a thickly-muscled cornerback who might transition to safety because of his 4.59 speed. The Vikings need more competition at strong safety and dime back. Exum does come in as an injury concern. He tore an ACL in a pickup basketball game in January of 2013. He returned in October and played three games before injuring an ankle and missing the rest of the season. - The Sports Xchange


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