DB Darius West, Kentucky

5’11” – 208 – 4.39

Redshirted, then rotated into the defense and played on special-teams the following year, finishing with seventeen tackles. Missed the subsequent season with a knee injury, then stepped into a starting role in 2017, finishing with 85 tackles and an interception, followed by a senior campaign of 86 tackles, three interceptions, and six passes defensed. Thickly-built strong safety who lines up both deep in the secondary and closer to the line of scrimmage, playing opposite Mike Edwards; will also shade over bunches to provide additional zone coverage. Just an adequate athlete on tape; not one of the most gifted prospects in terms of his overall speed, explosiveness, and fluidity, seemingly lacking a second gear. Range is somewhat limited and tended to be used as more of a robber than a deep safety. When he shades over, tends to play well off the line of scrimmage in order to keep the play in front of him and avoid having to turn and run. Wasn’t asked to match up in man coverage often during the games reviewed but may be able to carry runners out of the backfield on passing routes. Good recognition and timing to see underneath patterns developing and come up to make the hit. Able to compensate for his lack of athleticism by playing with patience and taking solid angles to the ball; pretty conservative, reliable safety who knows his responsibility as the last line of defense. Likes to come up and defend the run; good key-reader who maximizes his athletic ability and shows a knack for hunting down ballcarriers. Able to sift through trash and get to the play when dealing with congestion. Good feel for screens developing, being quick to diagnose and using his hands well to slip blockers and make his way to the ball. Effective wrap tackler with some thump; brings a tough, lunch-pail type of approach and doesn’t miss many of the opportunities he’s in position to take advantage of, keeping his shoulders square and using technique. Good in the open field, with the ability to break down. A productive two-year starter who seems to have a good mental grasp for the position and who also offers reliable tackling ability; really helped answer questions about his athleticism with a blazing forty-time in Indianapolis. Projects as a special-teams contributor and potentially a box safety.

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