Can Lightning Strike Twice With Clemson Safety T.J. Green?
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) — Once upon a time the Eagles dipped into Clemson to find quite a safety.
If T.J. Green has anything to say about it, history might repeat itself in this month's draft as the former Tigers safety was in Philadelphia Tuesday for a pre-draft visit with the Eagles.
As you might expect from a safety from Clemson, one of Green's role models is former nine-time Pro Bowl DB Brian Dawkins, one of the greatest Eagles of all-time and a second-round pick out of the school back in 1996.
Green, however, is a different kind of safety than Dawkins, who was one of the most intimidating back-end defenders in NFL lore.
Green has the size to be a thumper at 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds but what's really eye-popping about his skill set is the speed. recording a stunning 4.34 in the 40-yard dash.
"He's a former wide receiver so he's got top-tier athleticism and pretty good ball skills for the position," an NFL scout told 973espn.com. "He's a coverage guy, though, so if you are looking for someone to help in the box, this isn't your guy. He still needs a lot of work in run support"
The Eagles are set at safety when it comes to the starting lineup with Pro Bowl selection Malcolm Jenkins and free-agent signee Rodney McLeod but the depth on hand leaves a lot to be desired. Chris Maragos is best served as a special-teams stalwart and both Ed Reynolds and Jerome Couplin are unproven options.
"There is a buzz going around about (Green) from some people I talk to on a regular basis but I'm not sure where it is coming from," an NFL executive told NFL.com. "He's fast, but what else?"
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973ESPN.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen