Prospects

Prospects
Photo of T.J. Ward
T.J. Ward (FS)
  • Height:
    5'10"
  • Weight:
    211 lbs.
  • Arm Length:
    30 3/4 in.
  • Hand Size:
    9 1/4 in.
  • College:
    Oregon
  • Conference:
    Pac-12
Featured Prospects
Selected by: Cleveland Browns
Round: 2
Pick (Overall): 6 (38)
Discuss
Pick Analysis: The Browns surprise many with their decision to bypass Jimmy Clausen and Colt McCoy to take T.J Ward. The hard-hitting safety has solid overall skills, and gives the Browns a legitimate playmaker in the middle of the field. While the pick will be roundly criticized, the move to address their porous secondary is a classic case of a team filling their biggest needs through the draft.

Overview

Ward was a two-year starter for the Ducks but has missed some time throughout his career with injuries. Lacks great height but has the strength, toughness, athleticism and instincts to play the safety position. Ward has shown some versatility in the secondary, playing on the perimeter as well as safety. He runs well, showing good range from center field as well as good lateral agility and quickness to navigate through traffic. He is a solid run-support player, keeping leverage in space and is a reliable tackler. He understands angles and is rarely out of position, anticipating break points well in the passing game. He doesn't have elite speed but shows enough athleticism to be effective off the hash as well as out of centerfield. Ward is a good football player who lacks height but should contribute on special teams, as well as providing valuable depth in his rookie season.


Strengths

Ward is athletic enough to play both cornerback and safety. Has good speed and sinks his hips well to maintain it in transition. Smart player who takes good angles in run support and is a sound tackler. Reads the quarterback's eyes to anticipate routes in the passing game.

Weaknesses

Ward lacks height and overall size. Can be out-muscled by bigger receivers and struggles to disengage from blockers in run support. Does not have the explosion and ball skills to be a true centerfielder. There are questions about his durability after two major knee surgeries.

Grade

6.1

 
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