Charles Godfrey (CB)
An unheralded player with the versatility to play any position in the secondary, Charles Godfrey emerged as one of the few bright spots on the Hawkeyes' defense in 2007.
Facing some of the best receivers in the country, his main pass coverage assignments accounted for just 15 receptions for 117 yards (7.8-yard average) and no touchdowns during his final season at Iowa.
Godfrey flew under the radar for most of his college career, but the Iowa coaching staff regarded him as a vital cog in the Hawkeyes' defensive scheme. He began playing for the Hawkeyes as a reserve free safety, shifting to strong safety as a sophomore. With the departure of the entire Iowa secondary after the 2005 campaign, Godfrey shifted to right cornerback as a junior, starting at that position during his final two seasons.
Godfrey earned first-team All-Greater Houston and All-Conference as a senior at Robert E. Lee High School, along with Class 5A honorable mention All-State. He was named Defensive Player of the Year as a senior and selected to play in the Global Junior All-Star Game and the Bayou Bowl. He led his team to an 11-2 record, as he recorded 90 tackles, two interceptions, six pass break-ups and two blocked punts as a senior. He also returned kicks and had a 31.5 yard average.
The brother of former Kansas State star quarterback El Roberson, Godfrey rejected a scholarship offer from the Wildcats to enroll at Iowa in 2004. One of three true freshmen to letter, he appeared 11 games behind Sean Considine (Philadelphia) at free safety, posting 10 tackles (seven solo) while recovering two fumbles.
In 2005, Godfrey shifted to strong safety, starting twice at that position while also filling in at free safety vs. Illinois. He registered 35 tackles (27 solo) with a stop for a loss in 11 games, as he also caused one fumble, earning Reggie Roby Special Teams Player of the Year honors.
Godfrey shifted to right cornerback in 2006, but still excelled on special teams with the punt team. The team's Special Teams Hustle Award winner posted 83 tackles (61 solo), the third-best total on the team. He had two stops for losses, a forced fumble, one fumble recovery and two interceptions. He also broke up five passes.
As a senior right cornerback, Godfrey garnered All-American honorable mention and All-Big Ten Conference second-team accolades. He started all 12 games, ranking fifth on the squad with 65 tackles (42 solo) and a stop for a loss. He intercepted five passes and broke up nine others.
In 47 games at Iowa, Godfrey earned 28 starting assignments, with 25 coming at right cornerback, two at strong safety and one at free safety. He recorded 193 tackles (137 solos) with four stops for losses of six yards, three fumble recoveries and a pair of forced fumbles. He deflected 14 passes and gained 38 yards on seven interception returns.
Attended Robert E. Lee (Baytown, Tex.) High School, playing football for head coach Dick Olin...Earned first-team All-Greater Houston and All-Conference as a senior, along with Class 5A honorable mention All-State...Named Defensive Player of the Year as a senior and selected to play in the Global Junior All-Star Game and the Bayou Bowl...Led his team to an 11-2 record, as he recorded 90 tackles, two interceptions, six pass breakups and two blocked punts as a senior...Also returned kicks and had a 31.5-yard average.
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Positives: Has decent muscle definition for a cornerback, but can also add at least another 10 pounds of bulk without the added weight affecting his foot speed for a possible move to safety...Very physical hitter who likes to provide run support...Has good arm length and elevation, along with the timing to compete for jump balls and knows how to reach around the receiver to disrupt and break up the pass at its high point...Hard worker in the weight room who takes well to hard coaching...Has good eyes for recognizing pocket movement, but still needs to do a better job of making plays with his back to the ball...Hard wrap-up tackler who keeps his pad level down, but must reduce the times he takes a side rather than driving through with his hits (likes to arm tackle)...Has a better feel playing in the zone than in deep man coverage, as his timed speed lets him get to plays in front of him with good timing and burst...Likes to bang heads when coming up to fill rush lanes, avoiding blocks to close with good urgency...Has developed better hand-eye coordination and will extend and pluck the ball outside his frame (would trap the ball before, leading to more deflections than interceptions)...Takes good angles to impact the outside rushing attack and push those plays back inside...Has the ability to drive through ballcarriers, as he consistently attacks the outside leg to impede forward progress (does this well in closed quarters, but for some reason, in the open, he prefers to grab and drag down)...Has the eyes to read and jump routes, but needs to stay in control and not try to punish the receiver when doing this (likes to shove and push)...Strong enough in the press to take the receiver out of his game...His poor hip snap will see him lose some position when turning, but in plays in front of him, he has the burst to close...Not as reckless jumping routes playing the zone as he does in man coverage...Has the body control to adjust to the thrown ball and while his timed speed says he can carry receivers down field, he needs to improve his plant-and-drive skills, along with his turning motion to be more effective there...Explosive leaper who likes to combat for jump balls...Has the strength and physicality in his play to turn runs back inside and while he can avoid blocks in traffic, he also has the hand jolt to stop blockers in their tracks.
Negatives: Needs to play with better control, as he gets too reckless, resulting in a high amount of costly interference penalties...Has very good timed speed, but shows sloppy footwork in transition and might be best bulking up and shifting to safety, as he plays downhill better than he does when having to shadow and trail receivers into the deep secondary...Still learning proper hand placement technique, often flagged for jabbing and grabbing with his hands throughout the route's progression (must do a better job of mirroring without hand contact)...Must refine his backpedal technique, as he doesn't get good knee bend and will take false steps out of his breaks...Does not always play up to his timed speed, as he fails to open his hips and turn fluidly...Showed better reaction skills as a senior, but might have deep vision problems, as he will look very surprised as the ball comes right into his view late...Decent wrap-up tackler, but needs to stay lower in his pads and drive harder with his legs when asked to step up and impact the running game (will sometimes take a side or try to arm tackle)...Despite his timed speed, a lack of fluid hip snap and change-of-direction skills makes him late coming out of his turns and he fails to show the recovery burst to get back into the play when a receiver gets behind him.
Compares To: TANARD JACKSON-Tampa Bay...Like Jackson and Alabama's Simeon Castille, Godfrey might be a better fit as a free safety than at cornerback. He made great strides in his coverage skills as a senior, but just seems more comfortable in run support and playing the ball than covering a receiver one-on-one. He is too aggressive at the corner position and the result has been a high amount of interference calls. He has excellent timed speed, but with stiff hips and a marginal backpedal, it is negated by the false steps and poor turning agility he shows in transition. Move him inside, where he can play downhill, and you get better value.
2005: Missed the final quarter of the Purdue game (10/18) and the entire Indiana game (10/15) with a high ankle sprain.
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