Taylor Mays  S  USC

TALENT BOARD

 Round 4


 

STRENGTHS

Taylor has excellent size and track speed to play his position.  He has long legs that make it easy for him to cover a lot of ground and he can cover the whole field.  Taylor plays a lot of single safety because of his ability to cover ground once he gets up to speed and looks to be an excellent track star playing football.  Taylor Mays because of his size speed ratio has been compared to Troy Polamalu Safety Pittsburgh Steelers but personally for me he reminds me of Roy Williams Safety drafted # 8 in 2002 by the Dallas Cowboys. 

 

NEEDS TO IMPROVE

Taylor is a track star trying to convince people that he is a impact football player.  He does not wrap up when he tackles, he lacks instincts and football intelligence,  he has straight line speed but very slow lateral agility and his make up speed lacks effort.  He needs the play in front of him at all times and that is why he is playing deep in a single safety system. Taylor does not take good angles and does not cover well at all.  If you put Taylor up near the line of scrimmage he will fall for play action every time.  I do not see him with a lot of interceptions because he does not have good hands and is always out of position to intercept the ball.  This kid plays nothing like Troy Polamalu did when he was in college.  The comparison is strictly for marketing purposes by the USC public relations department to guarantee a 1st round draft pick in this years draft. 

    

BOTTOM LINE

Pete Carroll has a big interest in making sure he has a first round pick in the draft every year.  This is how he recruits.  This is why he holds his own personal combine and does not let his players go to the real combine.  I don't blame him I just think he is obvious.  The fact is that by holding his own combine he can fool a lot of scouts and coaches with workouts designed to magnify his players strengths. Taylor is a workout warrior who once in a while makes a play on the football field.  Those are the facts.  With Taylor's size and speed tell me why would Pete not move him up to the LB position or even use him as a rover like he used Troy Polamalu when he played for USC.  There is a reason.  Pete is smart and he knows Taylor does not tackle very well and has no football instincts.  Pete knows that if he keeps Taylor out of the action and lets him workout at his personal combine that Taylor (because of his size/ speed ratio) will automatically be considered a 1st round draft pick.  An NFL coach is going to see Taylor workout and then go to some edited film and think that Taylor is the next great safety to hit the football world.  I'm here to tell you it's not going to happen.  If I'm wrong ...so be it.  But I'm not.  Last year I told you Clay Mathews and Brian Cushing were going to be good players for the teams that drafted them because... that is what I saw on the film.  This year I'm telling you Taylor is average at best because that is what I see on film.  I have no axe to grind I just call it like I see it.

Drew Boylhart  11/09