2017 NFL DRAFT

Justin Simmons, FS

School: Boston College  |  Conference: ACC
College Experience: Senior  |  Hometown: Stuart, FL
Height/Weight: 6-2 / 202 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.
8943

Player Lowdown

Combine Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.612.67-16 40-3.856.58
Workout Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.522.671.6016 4010'6"3.856.58

Player Overview

After splitting duty between free safety and cornerback in 2014, Simmons moved back to centerfield in 2015 and showed off his steady tackling and playmaking ability, recording 67 tackles and leading the team in turnovers forced, playing a role in 10 (five interceptions, two forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries) in just 12 games. Simmons followed that up with an impressive week of practice at the East-West Shrine Game, stealing the spotlight from other prospects who perhaps entered the week with more national attention.

Simmons led Boston College in tackles (76) and was the only Eagles defender with multiple interceptions (two) in 2014 and leaves BC with appearances in 50 games, totaling 229 tackles, 22 passes broken up, eight interceptions, four forced fumbles and four recoveries.

Stealing the spotlight is nothing new for Simmons, who signed with the Eagles as a highly regarded prep prospect out of the talent-rich state of Florida with 24 career interceptions.

Strengths Weaknesses

STRENGTHS: Possesses a long, lanky frame with broad shoulders and long arms. Surprisingly agile and accelerates smoothly for a player of his size, showing impressive stop and start quickness and balance.

Has starting experience at cornerback and free safety, often coming down from centerfield to handle nickel corner duties. Shows excellent diagnosis skills, a sign of long hours in the film room, often making his way toward receiver screens or jumping routes. Good vision, acceleration and confidence to make plays on the ball, knocking down passes that look like potential receptions and showing good hands for the interception.

Plays fast and decisive in all directions, closing with purpose in coverage and as a run defender. A reliable open-field tackler who delivers a blow and wraps up with his long arms. Experienced special teams performer with the toughness and competitiveness to remain playing in this role in the NFL.

WEAKNESSES: While tall, Simmons possesses a very lanky frame with narrow hips, potentially limiting his ability to gain much weight. Projects much better at free safety than cornerback in the NFL, though his length and ball-skills may intrigue press-heavy teams. He plays upright and tight, which hinders his change of direction skills. Struggled in one-on-one drills at times at the Shrine Game practices, getting his feet tied up and failing to cover receivers in reverse.

IN OUR VIEW: In a relatively weak class of safeties, Simmons' combination of length, ball-skills and reliable open-field tackling stands out. He has shown a knack for making big plays in big games (two interceptions vs. Notre Dame, one against Clemson and strong week at the Shrine Game), which will boost his stock with scouts.

--Rob Rang (@robrang) (2/10/16)

 
 
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