Prospect: Kenny Vaccaro, FS/SS, Texas
By Clint Clearwater
NFL Draft Director and Senior Writer
January 19, 2013
6-1 Wt: 218 40: 4.49

Strengths: Terrific coverage skills; very impressive.  He is very good in both zone and man coverage.  Fluid hips, able to turn and go with receiver.  Shows very quick footwork.  Has good awareness able to read the QB’s eyes.  Great instincts.  Does a good job at playing the ball in the air and uses his hands effectively.  Great reaction time, no hesitation coming up to make the tackle and deliver big hits.  Plays with good speed and quickness; able to play center field.  Lines up and plays corner at times.  Physical player; has a good jam at the line of scrimmage.  Shows good ability to cover bigger receivers and TEs.  Solid tackler and very aggressive.  Has a good motor.  Dangerous punt returner.  Has a good amount of experience.  Nose for the football.  Leader.  I think he could play both safety positions in the NFL.

Weaknesses:  I think his biggest weakness is his aggressiveness.  He often over-pursues because he’s so aggressive.  He needs to learn to break down and stay in control.  Although he plays with speed and quickness, I think his overall speed is not elite.  I would like to see him make more splash plays (INTs, game-changing plays).  Arrested last summer with teammate Alex Okafor for failing to obey a police officer.           

Summary: Kenny Vaccaro has some of the best coverage skills out of any prospect in this draft.  He can cover slot receivers, big wideouts and even tight ends.  I have been very impressed with his tape this season.  In fact, he is the only safety that I have a first round grade on.  He’s got great size, fluid hips, textbook tackling skills, and elite instincts.  I think he will be a hot commodity this April.  My main disappointment with Vaccaro is his lack of focus when it comes to his aggressiveness.  I have seen him miss plays, miss tackles, over-pursue or simply be fooled by a fake all because he is so aggressive.  He needs to learn to stay in control and break down on plays.  However, based on the film that I have watched, I have been very impressed with Vaccaro and I think he is a strong first round pick this year.             

Draft Projection: Top 25