Byron Jones   CB   Connecticut

TALENT BOARD ROUND 2

STRENGTHS
Byron has the size, speed, quickness and agility to be a good cover corner. His cover skills are solid and heís tough, which we saw as he played through injuries this year for his college team. Byron has the wingspan to cover those tall, long receivers and the toughness and agility to cover the smaller, quick receivers as well. His college team has had him playing in a lot of off coverage this year, but Byron seems to be a much better fit as a bump and run cover corner. He has the hands to make the interception and if you use him as a free safety because of his tackling, Iím sure he can become a ball hawk and make an impact.

CONCERNS
Byron has been playing through a very sore shoulder; if this is a chronic issue, it may drop him in this draft. As with most athletic players, Byron has some bad habits technique-wise and footwork-wise that will be magnified at the next level until he corrects them. In zone coverage, he seems to allow his cushion to be taken away from him too quickly and he continues to look in to the backfield the entire time in zone coverage. If heís doing this, heís not reading routes or receivers which makes him very susceptible to double moves and getting beat deep like a drum. Byron just hasnít had a steady diet of top flight receivers to defend at the college level and he is in for a big shock. He might be a better fit as a free safety than a corner in spite of his coverage skills during workouts.

BOTTOM LINE
Byronís talent leaps out at you on the film. However, his footwork is slow and he hasnít played very smart zone defense, but when heís played up tight on the receiver, he can be effective. Of course he has to correct his stance because he is back on his heels way too much and that will be taken advantage of at the NFL level. Byron shows good leadership skills on the field through his play and looks to be an excellent teammate. Because of his bad habits developed when playing against inferior athletic talent, Byron may have to be moved to the safety position. He has the hands to make the interception and he is a good tackler; with the play in front of him, he could use his athletic talents to cover those big pass catching tight ends in the slot. Byron has to become a better student of the game and when he can do that he will become an impact defensive back no matter what position you decide to play him at.

Drew Boylhart
APR/2015