With the East vs West shrine game coming up this weekend and the Bills in need of a safety, this is a good time to talk about Justin Simmons. Simmons, the leader of Boston College defense stands at 6’3″ 201 lbs and is projected to run a 4.62 forty yard dash. Simmons will not be the fastest safety in this draft. He is more of a long strider, making him fast not quick. Simmon’s football IQ helps him cover ground and still be in a position to unload on the receiver. As a Junior, Simmons had 76 tackles 2 interception and followed that up this year with 67 tackles and 5 interception.
Simmons shows good range on this deep ball attempt. Watson telegraphed the pass and Simmons read it perfectly.
Justin is good at closing on the ball and making the tackle. Here he recognizes the flat/curl concept, closes on the tight end and delivers a blow.
He (#31) can play in the box to help with run support or he can blitz like on this play.
Simmons has played against the top talent in college football. In fact, Justin might have had his best game this year vs. a high powered Clemson team. He was all over the field totaling 9 tackles.
Look at how he drops into the box, buzzes to the flats where Watson wanted to go with the throw. The QB pulls it down and Simmons makes the tackle.
Look at how he communicates with the other safety. Simmons is just as versatile as he is intelligent. He is able to play as the deep safety. Look at how he reads the play and makes the tackle on the slippery Watson.
If Justin has a great shrine game and stands out at the combine he may sneak into late first round, but he should definitely be on Bills 2nd round pick radar. He is the kind of player that Rex Ryan needs in a free safety. Simmons is an intelligent player who loves studying film. But at the same time he has great instincts allowing him to play above the scheme. Sound like another safety that played in this scheme? I am sure Coach Reed would love to tutor this player. Hopefully the Bills have the opportunity to select this player in the upcoming draft.
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