Chris Clemons, FS, Clemson

Scouting Reports of safeties in the 2009 NFL Draft
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Chris Clemons, FS, Clemson

Postby Pudge » Wed Aug 17, 2011 12:40 pm

Chris Clemons
6-1/211 Clemson
4.41 Senior

Pros: An active safety with nice range that has good size, speed, and athleticism. Does a nice job wrapping as a tackler. Willing to throw his body around and thump receivers over the middle. Has a good nose for the ball, and shows some ball skills. Able to break up passes in the short zone with nice burst and has athleticism to challenge taller defenders for the ball in the air. Passionate player.

Cons: Will miss some tackles and because he tackles too high. Doesn't have a lot of pop and more of a drag-down tackler. Needs work in man coverage. Can get overly frustrated due to his emotions at times.

Overview: Clemons flashes good ability and potential at times. A three- year starter at free safety that was a bit overshadowed by Hamlin, but often appeared to be the more consistent defender on the field.

NFL Forecast: Clemons should make a nice backup free safety. I think he has the upside to start, but I don't think he'll be a great starter. His athletic potential is nice and impressive at times, but I don't see him as an impact defender as a starter. He'll make some nice plays from time to time, both in run support and coverage, but I don't think he'll do it on a consistent enough basis to merit him being a long-term option for a team. But he's a guy that I think will stick in the league. The type of players I foresee him being are like Marquand Manuel and Mark Roman. Good enough to start, but their respective teams are constantly looking for upgrades. I think Clemons could have a long NFL career, perhaps played 8 or 9 seasons and start for half of them. But he'll be a J.A.G. starter that is good enough just barely hold onto his starting job.

ATL Forecast: Clemons adds depth to the Falcons roster, but not really a long-term upside player. He could eventually take over for Coleman three or four years down the road and be a capable starter, but I don't think he'd be any better than Coleman is now, which is basically a mid- level starter in the league. He could help the Falcons on special teams and also challenge for the dime safety position, but his optimal role is an above average third safety.

Value: Clemons will provide good depth, making him a late round pick. At best, he should go in the fifth round. Anything higher is probably a reach based off his athletic potential.
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