Underrated defenders in the 2018 NFL Draft
It seems the top of the draft has been set. Teams and media alike have their personal favorites at every position, which in turn, causes all the attention to be given to a select few. Although there is a list of prospects who most consider a top-100 pick, there are many who deserve but don’t get the attention. You see it every year, a player in the top 15 picks in the draft, unable to live up to the hype. While a lesser-known prospect, who may have been selected in the later rounds, and in some situations, not at all, who become fast stars in the NFL.
This year is no different, as the media salivates over the popular names in the draft, there are many of (lesser known) names who have the potential to be difference makers. Focusing on the defensive side of the ball, we decided to look across the league and find a group of players, who may not be household names right now but could be within the next year.
CB Devron Davis (UTSA)- Although Davis has become a hot name amongst scouts, and execs alike, he lacks the media attention that other some lesser talented players may get. Despite him playing for what some consider a “small school” Davis passes the eye test, in every possible way. A true cover corner, he has the skill set to play in man on, zone, and off coverage. Capable of playing outside CB, nickel, dime, and both safety spots, he adds a versatility that teams covet across the league. He is also a demon in the run game and has the toughness to set the defensive tone.
CB Devin Abraham (USF)- Another corner who deserves more attention as the draft approaches. He may be considered too small by some (5’10 190 LBs), but don’t be fooled by it. The son of former pro-bowler Donnie Abraham, he brings some of the same tenacity, his father played with. Versatile as well, Abraham, can be plugged and played all over the defense. He is a natural leader, as he was named the captain of his defense, and brings a great presence to a locker room.
DE Chad Thomas (Miami)- It’s hard to miss a 6’5 280 LB defensive end, but for somehow, that is exactly what has happened. Strong as a pass-rusher, and tough against the run, Thomas has the making of a 3-down defender, and pro-bowler for the next 10 years. He has a strong base which helps him set the edge, and the pure strength to keep linemen off of his body. Miami may not be the popular team they once were, but they are consistently churning out talented NFL prospects.
LB Frank Ginda (San Jose State)- The 6’0 245 LB, prospect, I just a baller. A tackling machine (173 tackles), Ginda is a true ILB, who has the skill set to play all three downs, while adding his talents to special teams. Forget about his competition, when you put on the tape you see a young man who has the potential, to a stud at the next level.
S/CB Jeremy Reaves (South Alabama)- Yes! another defensive back. This one may be my personal favorite in this year’s draft. The 5’11 190 LB prospect, can truly play across the board, all corner positions, safety, and up at the line of scrimmage. He has good speed, great in coverage, and is an absolute hammer. Whoever ends up selecting this young man, may find themselves with a star.