NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken
This week I decided to leave my comfort zone and do a report on one of the more difficult positions to scout in my opinion. The Safety position can be tough when scouting off of TV because most of the time the view does not show us where exactly the Safety is lining up on each play and depending on the play call we may never see exactly what the player did on that particular play. Watching games this year, Cody Prewitt kept popping up for the plays he was making so I decided to give him a closer look. Here is what I saw.
Name: Cody Prewitt
School: Senior, University of Mississippi
Prewitt has ideal size for the position with a long muscular frame that still has room to get bigger. He is a productive, playmaking safety as evident by his 11 interceptions and 12 pass break ups over his career. He high points the ball well and has good hands. Prewitt is a smart player with great instincts and is quick to react to what he sees developing. He has good straight line speed showing the ability to run with receivers down field as well. He is a solid tackler, using his long frame and good technique to make plays in the open field. In the pass game he can close quickly on receivers and tight ends and lay a good clean hit. Prewitt displays good technique in his back pedal and has fluid hips in his turns. Has the size of a strong safety type, but good enough range to play more of a free safety type role. Lastly, he also can contribute in special teams as a gunner. I highlighted a few plays below showing Prewitt’s instincts, tackling in both coverage as well as on punt coverage, and fundamentals.
Prewitt does not have that killer instinct I look for in a safety ala Rodney Harrison. In the run game he allows the play to come to him rather than going up and making the play. He has played almost exclusively as the boundary safety in zone coverage, so he may be limited in what you can ask him to do from a scheme standpoint. In the rare event that Prewitt moved down into the box to cover a TE or slot WR he struggled because of his lack of lateral agility and quickness. In the play below, I highlight a play where I thought Prewitt could have been a little more aggressive in making the play in the run game. This shows up several times in this game as well as every other game I watched of his.
You cannot deny Prewitt’s play making ability from the safety position. He has good speed, but where he excels is with his instincts and smarts. Prewitt also will enter the NFL with great size for the position and can still add some weight to his frame. I am a little concerned with his aggressiveness in the running game. Far too many times he either allows other players to come and make the play rather than run up and stop the play himself. The funny thing though is that he is much more aggressive in the passing game. If he can translate his playing style to fit his body type, he could be a special type of Safety. I think his smarts and his style of play do fit the Patriots system very well and I think he will be on the Patriots radar come draft time. I give him a late second/early third round grade.