A general consensus on S J.J. Wilcox....

Discussion in 'Draft Zone' started by Risen Star, Apr 27, 2013.

  1. DesiredTraits

    DesiredTraits New Member

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    J.J. Wilcox might be the best player you haven't heard of in this draft. He played defense for just one season at Georgia Southern but one scout has him ranked No. 2 among this year's safeties. He could be a target for the Packers, who have failed to replace Nick Collins.

    J.J. Wilcox is the biggest sleeper in this year’s draft.
    The safety from Georgia Southern is considered a third-round pick by ESPN’s Mel Kiper and NFL.com’s Mike Mayock. A fourth-round prospect by NFL Draft Scout and National Football Post. A fifth-rounder by the Sporting News. An undrafted free agent by Optimum Scouting.

    The truth is, Wilcox might go in the second round in two weeks — quite possibly to Green Bay, which is desperately trying to find a safety to fill the shoes of Pro Bowler Nick Collins.

    An AFC scout told Packer Report that he has Wilcox ranked the second-best safety in this draft. Dave-Te’ Thomas, the head scout for Scouting Services Inc. — a scouting service used extensively by most teams in the league — said he’d “take (Wilcox) over any safety” in this draft.

    “I love this freaking kid,” Thomas said.

    During his first three seasons at Georgia Southern, Wilcox played three positions — flanker as a freshman, A-back in the wishbone as a sophomore and slot receiver as a junior. At each position, Wilcox was a premier playmaker. During the summer before his senior season, the coaching staff asked Wilcox if he’d mind moving to safety to help a porous defense.

    A consummate team player, Wilcox embraced the change.

    “Once he showed me the depth chart, I went in with it,” Wilcox told Packer Report on Thursday. “I felt good about it. I always wanted to play safety. I always wanted to hit. I have a defensive mentality so it was easy to transfer over.”

    To get ready for fall camp, he watched tape of Charles Woodson, who played both sides of the ball at Michigan. And he gobbled up film of the late Sean Taylor, along with John Lynch and Brian Dawkins.

    “I love football and I have a great sense of respect for the game,” Wilcox said. “I study the game whenever I get a chance.”

    At the Senior Bowl, scouts didn’t quite know what to expect. They knew he was an excellent athlete. They saw him deliver 88 tackles and two interceptions as a senior. But that was against FCS competition. How would he fare against some of the best players in the senior class?

    “He (kicked) *** at the Senior Bowl,” Thomas said. “I don’t care about what people say. ‘Oh, he looked lost on some plays.’ (Baloney) he was lost. If he was lost, man … You go back and look at the film and the kid’s got good stick-to-itiveness to him. You put him in a system with a quality coach and you’re probably going to have the best safety in this draft.”

    Wilcox was first-team all-Southern Conference as a senior. He had nine tackles against Georgia and his second interception clinched a quarterfinal victory over Old Dominion.

    With so much ability — Wilcox (6-1, 217) ran 4.57 at the Combine with a 35-inch vertical, plus he’s an excellent communicator — and so many areas in which he can improve, Wilcox’s best football is in front of him.

    “They like my upside,” Wilcox said of scouts. “At the safety position, usually what you see is what you get because they played four years at the position. With me, this is my first year and I accomplished everything that I set out to do. Everything that a safety does in four years, I did it in one. My upside is good, my versatility — I can play either strong or free — my speed and my ball skills. Just the upside that I have, there’s nothing I can’t do. I can tackle good, I can move good. I just need more reps and more teaching of the position and the sky’s the limit. With what I did in one year, imagine what I can do with another two or three years under my belt.”

    Wilcox said the Packers have been “buzzing around a lot” before the draft and made note of their presence at the FCS semifinal game at North Dakota State.

    “I really like the organization — great coaching staff, a winning tradition,” he said.

    Reaching the NFL has been Wilcox’s dream since he was a kid. Getting there will be sweet — and not just for himself.

    “I think my parents are going to be proud and it will be very emotional for them knowing that their son has made it to the highest level of football,” Wilcox said. “I don’t look at it as much for me. Yeah, I want to be the best player that I can be but I just want to better my parents and their situation because there were a lot of sacrifices to get me to where I’m at.”
  2. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    Please don't take this as a jab - it's not meant to be. But if Nawrocki is working with the same 150 slots as his colleagues - some players at some postion must be getting a pass.

    So, are you saying Nawrocki is particularly tough when it comes to grading safeties? I'm curious.
  3. CATCH17

    CATCH17 1st Round Pick

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    It's good to see that the Packers had him rated so high.

    I'm nervous about this pick because of guys like AOA but hopefully this one is different.
  4. alpha

    alpha Member

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    In one sentence you allow for 10% to become standout starters, but then immediately go on to say "nobody drafted in the 6th round is going to be a beast." Who's being silly?

    P.S.: It's a good thing Ratliff was drafted in the 7th rather than the 6th or he woulda never made a name for himself.
  5. Zimmy Lives

    Zimmy Lives Well-Known Member

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    Only in Jerry's mind. :laugh2:

    Heaven help the Cowboys if one of the grandpappys on the d-line go down due to injury or age. :D
  6. reddyuta

    reddyuta Well-Known Member

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    great read,thanks for posting.They must have really liked him in the senior bowl,i believe Kiffin was there too.
  7. blackbull

    blackbull Well-Known Member

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    Everybody is talking cash money stuff about this guy. I hope I'm wrong about him.
  8. BAT

    BAT Mr. Fixit

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    AOA never played safety, at least not at the college level. And AOA may end up being a decent zone corner in Kiffin's Tampa 2. Unlike Wilcox, AOA was not an especially physical defender.
  9. FuzzyLumpkins

    FuzzyLumpkins The Boognish

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    Yeah he did. They moved him there so teams couldn't just throw to the side of the field away from him.

    AOA played div 2 which is below div1-aa. Wilcox was in the latter and Georgia Southern was one of the best schools in the division. The program is moving to division 1 and the sun belt they have advanced so far.
  10. xwalker

    xwalker Well-Known Member

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    Yes, AOA played some Safety in college.

    IMO, the Cowboys didn't properly evaluate AOA's mental-makeup.

    The biggest contribution that I think Garrett the Head Coach has made to the Cowboys is that he has the team more focused on the mental-makeup of players. He even hired an outside firm to help in the evaluations.

    Many of the Cowboys past draft failures were due to poor mental-makeup. Barbie Carpenter, Jacob Rodgers, Robert Brewster, Jason Williams and AOA all had the physical ability to play in the NFL but didn't have the correct mental-makeup to succeed. Carpenter and Rodgers didn't like the physicality of the game. Brewster didn't like playing football and had a poor work ethic. Williams and AOA just couldn't pick up the defensive concepts. I don't think any of those players would have passed Garrett's standards in the mental-makeup area.
  11. Zordon

    Zordon Well-Known Member

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    Excellent post. The difference between AOA and Wilcox is moreso in the head more than anything else. Just listen to Wilcox talk for 5 minutes and you can tell he has high enthusiasm for the game. AOA came off very aloof and played like that. He was not physical at all.
  12. CowboyMcCoy

    CowboyMcCoy Business is a Boomin

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    He's coming back to camp this year, no?

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