Eric Berry

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May 122012


Free safety/strong safety 


6-0 211

40 time: 4.40

Draft board overall prospect rank: #4

Draft board safety rank: #1

Overall rating: 98*

 3/2/10: Of all the good things we could say about Berry, freakish athleticism was not one of them. That is no longer the case as he ran a 4.40 at 6-0 211, benching 19 reps, and flying 43 inches into the air. He’s still a risk in the top 3 because of his position. If he were drafted in the top 3, he’d absolutely have to be a perennial Pro Bowler, otherwise it was a waste of a pick. That being said, he’s one of the few safeties I’d say is deserving of a top 5 pick and if the Chiefs didn’t need a left tackle so badly, he’d be a lock to go 5th overall. He still could if Russell Okung is off the board at 5.

1/23/10: Berry didn’t have as many picks this year, 2, as he had in his first 2 years at Tennessee, 12, but that barely will effect his stock. He’s a real ballhawk in the defensive backfield and patrols zone very well with excellent instincts, but he also has above average coverage skills for a safety and has spent some time at cornerback, in addition to free safety and strong safety. He hits hard, but because of his size, 5-11 200, he projects as a free safety at the next level. In his NFL career he is going to break up plenty of passes, get plenty of tackles, picks, etc and could be the first defensive back to go in the top 3 the last 13 years this year if Tampa Bay falls in love with him.

12/12/09: He hasn’t had as many picks this season as he did last season, but he’s still only 20 and he is showing a lot of poise in the defensive backfield and has great football instincts. 

            6/18/09: As a mere sophomore, Eric Berry’s stats showed his uncanny knack for the game of football as a whole. He had 72 tackles, 8.5 for a loss, 3 sacks, and 7 picks, 2 of which he returned for touchdowns. Safeties rarely go in the top 5, but Berry is the type of safety who I would be surprised if he were not a top 5 pick come draft day 2010. He is the type of ball hawking safety that turns a bad defense to a passable defense, a passable defense into a good defense, and a good defense into a great one. He not only has the ability to go after the ball, pick it off, and return it for a good gain, but he has the ability to actually bait quarterbacks into making bad throws, which is something that is very rare for a college safety and that is the reason why he is drawing comparisons to Ed Reed. His speed for a safety is very rare and he should run a mid 4.3s 40. Its hard to find flaws in his game, but he isn’t very big. He’s only 195 pounds, but he hits like someone that’s a lot bigger. However, I wouldn’t say that he’s like an extra linebacker out there, as some safeties are. He is called a bit of a tweener because of his size. He doesn’t have the prototypical size for a safety, and he’s not good enough man-to-man to be a cornerback. However, his ball hawking and play making abilities are too good to not have on the field, and that can be put at any position in the defensive backfield. He is most likely to be a strong safety at the next level because that was where he played in college and where he is most comfortable. He also doubles as a kick returner at Tennessee, and is starting to see some snaps on the offensive end. Overall, Berry’s knack for the game and football skills are likely going to get him drafted in the top 5 and he should have a very productive NFL career.

NFL Comparison: Ed Reed


*=For a breakdown of what this means, click here



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