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NFL Draft 2019: Scouting the defensive backs

In this Nov. 11, 2017, file photo, LSU

In this Nov. 11, 2017, file photo, LSU cornerback Andraez "Greedy" Williams (29) pulls in an interception in the end zone late in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Arkansas in Baton Rouge, La. Williams is a possible pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. Photo Credit: AP/Gerald Herbert

Greedy Williams, CB, LSU

Height: 6-2

Weight: 185

40 time: 4.37

Strengths: Extremely fast and can thus deal with the fastest of the NFL’s receivers … Had a combined eight interceptions over his last two seasons at LSU … Has a good knack for knowing where the ball is and can thus anticipate well.

Weaknesses: Coaches concerned he isn’t physical enough and shies away from tackling … Needs to bulk up considerably, although be careful not to reduce his speed.

Projected draft status: First round.

Quote: Williams on how good he is compared to the rest of this year’s draft-eligible defensive backs: “No doubt, film don’t lie. I am the best.”

Johnathan Abram, S, Mississippi State

Height: 5-11

Weight: 205

40 time: 4.45

Strengths: Fierce tackler with excellent run-stopping ability … Can be used as an extra linebacker when necessary … Excellent production last year with 99 tackles, three sacks and two interceptions.

Weaknesses: May not have the flat-out speed to deal with faster receivers down the field … Will need adjustment period to deal with more complicated NFL defenses.

Projected draft status: Rounds 1-2

Quote: Abram on where he’s most comfortable on the field: “Honestly, I'm pretty much comfortable wherever you put me, down in the box, out in playing man-to-man in the slots or even at free, just roaming around back deep. Whatever works for you, I'm going to make it work for me.”

Byron Murphy, CB, Washington

Height: 5-11

Weight: 190

40 time: 4.55

Strengths: Had four interceptions last year, including one returned for a touchdown … Can match opposing receiver’s moves with good fluidity … Projects as a very good zone defender.

Weaknesses: Doesn’t have top end speed to deal with deep receiving threats … Will occasionally miss tackles.

Projected draft status: Rounds 1-2.

Quote: NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah on Murphy’s overall ability: “He has excellent instincts and ball skills. Overall, Murphy lacks ideal size/speed, but he's ultra-instinctive and will be very attractive to teams that play a lot of zone coverage.”

Rock Ya-Sin, CB, Temple

Height: 6-foot

Weight: 192

40 time: 4.51

Strengths: Very good man-to-man coverage ability … Excellent leadership skills that were frequently noted by his coaches … Physical presence with good tackling ability.

Weaknesses: Played only one year at Temple after transferring from Presbyterian College … Will need time to adjust to NFL level.

Projected draft status: Rounds 1-2.

Quote: Ya-Sin on his football journey: “I came into high school as a wrestler. I wrestled throughout high school. I started playing football in the 11the grade. So, I was a little under recruited. So, I transferred to Temple and I was immediately eligible. I just came in, worked every day. I attacked everything that we were doing. Weight room, conditioning, mat drills or whatever we were doing, I attacked. I went hard and earned the respect of my teammates and my coaches.”

Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia

Height: 5-11

Weight: 193

40 time: 4.52

Strengths: Comes off an excellent year in which he won the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation’s best defensive back … Had a team-high 10 pass breakups … Very sure tackler.

Weaknesses: Doesn’t have overwhelming speed … Will need to reduce use of hands to avoid interference penalties.

 Projected draft status: Rounds 1-2.

Quote: Baker on missing Georgia's bowl game to prepare for the draft: "“It was hard. I wanted to be out there with them. They wanted me out there with them, but they understood I had bigger things. Just knowing that I wanted to be out there with them, it was hurting me.”

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