As the NFL draft nears, USA TODAY High School Sports will look back at the high school careers and draft prospects for some of the top players. Here is today’s installment on Alabama safety Landon Collins.
High school: Dutchtown (Geismar, La.)
ALL-USA history: Named to the American Family Insurance first team in 2011. He was the first player in Louisiana Class 5A history to be named all-state for both offense and defense after he rushed for 1,218 yards and 25 touchdowns and had 34 tackles and four interceptions, two for touchdowns, as a senior.
Height, weight: 6-0, 228 pounds
By the numbers: He made 103 tackles, 60 solo, last year and 70/52 the year before and also had five interceptions and forced three fumbles in his college career.
Draft positives: Versatile back end defender. Instinctual mover, consistently in the right position pre and post snap. Anticipates the action and reacts fast. Explosive downhill tackler who closes a 10-yard gap quickly. Has a strong power presence, built thick and plays quick. Sound tackler in space, will wrap up and hit with force. Soft hands, good ball skills. Explosive blitzer off the edge. Good balance and body control.
Draft negatives: Seems a step behind as a coverage safety. Struggles to play the center fielder role, might not have the deep range to play a deep half. Moves heavy in man coverage.
Projection: Round 1
What he says: “I play my heart out, and they’re going to get the same thing in the NFL.”
Draft analysis provided by Dan Shonka, Ourlads.com