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Draft Countdown: Top 10 Safeties

Here is a breakdown of the Top 10 safeties available in the 2009 NFL Draft ...

1. Louie Delmas, Western Michigan

Ht: 5-11.5 Wt: 202 40-Yard: 4.47 Year: Sr.

Scouting Report: Delmas has been a terrific college safety and will do well at the next level for a team willing to overlook his size limitations. Best facing the action, he offers starting potential in a zone system.

Grade: Second Round

2. Patrick Chung, Oregon

Ht: 5-11.5 Wt: 212 40-Yard: 4.48 Year: 5-Sr.

Scouting Report: Chung has been a durable and productive college player, and he projects as a prototypical strong safety in the NFL. He lacks great upside, yet he does enough things well that he should break into a starting lineup and have a long career at the next level.

Grade: Second Round

3. Rashad Johnson, Alabama

Ht: 5-11.5 Wt: 203 40-Yard: 4.50 Year:5-Sr.

Scouting Report: Johnson is an opportunistic playmaker in the secondary with a terrific head for the game. He makes up for his lack of physical size with instincts and the ability to diagnose plays before they unfold. Johnson is a heady safety who could be used in a variety of defensive systems, and he offers starting potential at the next level. He could well be one of the most underrated players in this year's draft.

Grade: Second Round

4. William Moore, Missouri

Ht: 6-0 Wt: 221 40-Yard: 4.50 Year: 5-Sr.

Scouting Report:Moore carried high grades coming into this season, and he was considered by most NFL scouts as a potential first-round pick in this year's draft. Injuries hampered his play last season, and then a poor showing at the Senior Bowl really pushed him down draft boards. When he was at the top of his game as a junior, Moore displayed himself to be a complete defensive back who was an intimidating presence in centerfield against the run and pass. He enters the draft with a second-round grade and a lot of questions surrounding his game. Moore offers starting potential at the next level, and he will have a long, productive career if he gets his game back on track.

Grade: Second Round


Oregon's Patrick Chung

5. Chip Vaughn, Wake Forest

Ht: 6-1.4 Wt: 221 40-Yard: 4.41 Year: 5-Sr.

Scouting Report: Vaughn is a terrific run-defending safety who has improved the past two seasons. He offers the skill to be a starting strong safety at the next level, and he will also get consideration for teams that employ a zone system.

Grade: Second or Third Round

6. Sherrod Martin, Troy

Ht: 6-1 Wt: 198 40-Yard: 4.49 Year:6-Sr.

Scouting Report: Martin was a player who really stood out as a freshman when he made an immediate impact at Troy. He looked like a promising prospect as a sophomore before injuries slowed his development. Martin possesses the size/speed/ball skills to play at the next level, and he can be used as a safety occasionally pulled up over the slot receiver when necessary. He offers a good degree of upside, yet the medical report on his surgically repaired shoulders will ultimately dictate where he is drafted.

Grade: Third Round

7. Darcel McBath, Texas Tech

Ht: 6-0.5 Wt: 198 40-Yard: 4.52 Year:5-Sr.

Scouting Report: McBath has been very productive in college, and he would do well in a zone system at the next level that reduces his area responsibilities and puts him in a position where he can consistently face the action.

Grade:Third Round

8. Brandon Underwood, Cincinnati

Ht: 6-1 Wt: 198 40-Yard: 4.44 Year: 5-Sr.

Scouting Report: Underwood comes off a terrific season in which he was productive at both cornerback and safety. Non-rated by NFL scouting services coming into the year, he has pushed himself into the draft's top four rounds, and has enough skill to play a number of positions in the secondary. He's a top-120 choice who should see playing time as a rookie.

Grade: Third or Fourth Round

9. Derek Pegues, Mississippi State

Ht: 5-9.5 Wt:199 40-Yard: 4.56 Year: Sr.

Scouting Report: Pegues is a hard-working safety who also brings the element of return skills to his game. He's best in a zone system facing the action and a scheme that will not place him in man coverage situations.

Grade:Fourth Round

10. Michael Hamlin, Clemson

Ht: 6-2 Wt: 214 40-Yard: 4.60 Year: 5-Sr.

Scouting Report: Hamlin grades highly in the area of size, speed, and athleticism. He does not consistently play up to his level of ability, and more often than not, leaves scouts thinking he's capable of much more on the field. He has starting potential in the NFL, but unless Hamlin applies himself, he's bound to be a career backup.

Grade: Fourth Round

Profiles provided by Tony Pauline, NFL Draft analyst for and owner of

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