Brandon Jones Overview
Weight: 198 lbs
Arms: 30 ⅛”
Hands: 8 ¾”
Brandon Jones 2020 NFL Draft Profile
Playing for Texas’ Nacogdoches High School, Jones made a name for himself as he twice received All-State recognition and became a top-five defensive back within the state of Texas. The four-star prospect received numerous offers from schools such as Alabama, Ohio State, Oklahoma, and LSU before choosing Texas.
Jones saw immediate playing time as a true freshman in 2016 as he appeared in all 12 games and totaled 16 tackles. He built upon his debut season and as a sophomore, Jones started all 12 games for the Longhorns, finishing third on the team with 61 total tackles. Jones again started every game his junior season, totaling 70 tackles and receiving an All-Big-12 honorable mention. Electing to return for his senior season, Jones led the team with 86 total tackles, 64 of which were solo, through 12 starts.
- Impressive agility and short-area quickness;
- Very much a downhill, physical safety;
- Hard hitter with great tackling fundamentals;
- Good zone coverage skills and has a nose for the football;
- High motor player who is more than happy to throw his body around in run defense;
- Run support and tackling are tremendous which allows for nickel package versatility;
- Has NFL caliber athleticism but needs to polish his coverage skills;
- Blitzes with purpose and plays with his hair on fire.
- Man coverage skills are well below average and he can get exposed;
- Zone coverage skills are good but at this point he likely is not ready to play a deep centerfield;
- Lacks the desirable foot technique and hip fluidity needed to excel as a coverage safety;
- A bit undersized given his physical style of play;
- Without coverage improvements, he is much more of an undersized linebacker than he is a safety.
NFL Comparison: Patrick Chung
Projection: Mid third to mid fourth round
Bottom Line on Brandon Jones
Jones is an elite run defender for his position who loves to hit hard and play close to the line of scrimmage. With an impressive burst, Jones plays a downhill style of see ball, attack ball and has devastating hit power when squaring up ball carriers. Additionally, Jones’ brand of football can be classified with impressive controlled violence as he possesses elite tackling fundamentals and rarely gets shaken by shiftier backs. While Jones is adequate in underneath zone coverage, he is not yet ready to play as a deep centerfield over the top of a defense. Furthermore, Jones leaves a lot to be desired in man coverage as his below average hip fluidity and sloppy footwork often gets exposed even when manning up with averagely athletic receivers. However, in today’s NFL where sub-package nickel alignments are so important, Jones would offer significant value in such formations. Given Jones’ elite run defense, if coaches can help develop Jones into even just an average coverage player, he would certainly be a starting-caliber strong side safety.
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