PROS: Has nice speed and range to function in deep coverage. Does a nice job keeping things in front of him, and has the closing burst to come up and deliver a hit. Wraps up. Shows some ability to cover receiver in the slot.
CONS: Doesn't have ideal ball skills or awareness to make big play in coverage, a step or two late. Lacks great hips and burst to really do damage in man coverage. Is undersized and it shows when trying to defend the run at the point of attack.
OVERVIEW: Wright is an undersized run-defending free safety that flashes enough range and coverage ability to be to compete as a starter in the pros. A three-year starter at free safety, combining for 165 tackles, 8 interceptions, and 18 passes defended.
NFL FORECAST: Wright I think can be developed into a starter similar to Thomas DeCoud. I think he has superior speed than DeCoud, which makes his potential to make impact plays at the next level high. I think like DeCoud, he'll need at least a year of development before you can expect him to start to make an impact. Although since he's a junior, it might take him an extra year. He won't be a top safety, but should be a guy that can be an above average starter. He doesn't have poor ball skills, but just not good enough to make the necessary plays in coverage. With coaching, he can be a good NFL player, just not a great one.
ATL FORECAST: I think he could give DeCoud a run for his money, but essentially DeCoud has two good years of development over him. And if it takes him two more years to develop, then he won't be ready until DeCoud's contract is up. And that is where his true value in Atlanta is, if DeCoud hasn't proven himself to a level that merits a second contract, Wright should be able to step up and give capable production. He probably won't be a major upgrade over the kind of player that DeCoud is now, but at the very least can be a quality stopgap for a number of years before someone better can be found.
VALUE: Wright is good enough to go in the second half of the third round of the draft for a team looking for a fast, developmental free safety.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
BALL SKILLS: 3.0
Scouting Reports for the 2010 NFL Draft prospects.
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