Freys career got off to a rough start. He had hoped to make an impact as a true freshman, but was sidelined with a dislocated shoulder during preseason practice. After rehabbing that injury he again showed promise in 2008, even earning a start against Akron before breaking his right arm in the first quarter of that contest (finished with 10 tackles, 0.5 for loss, on the year). Thankfully for Frey and the Bearcats, he has only missed two games over the past three years and was awarded a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA. During the 2012 season, Frey picked off two passes in 11 games played.
Frey was an excellent high school athlete (3,000 rush yards his last two years, state long jump champion) and even served as a kicker (31 extra points, two field goals his senior year). And once he left the injury bug behind for the Bearcats, Frey became a fixture in the secondary. In 2009, he made 64 tackles, 3.5 for loss, while intercepting two passes and breaking up four others. The following year he also played well (52 tackles, 1.5 for loss, two INT) before earning first-team All-Big East honors in his fifth season (73 tackles, 2.5 for loss, two INT, eight PBU).
Tall, long safety with underrated athleticism. Very audible and active on the field prior to the snap, waving arms and shouting to adjust to the offensive formation. Stays low for leverage when facing blocking receivers. Attempts to disguise coverage prior to third downs, shifting his location. Recognizes run or pass early. Plays close to the line of scrimmage at the goal line, gets jam and stays close to slot receiver. Sits on inside route against slot tight ends, disrupts the receiver during the pattern. Effort and toughness are apparent.
Leaner build might cause problems in coverage against larger NFL receivers. Doesnt drive hard against the run when asked to be the single high safety, takes last line of defense very literally. Not around the play often enough, instead choosing to squad down and be cautious a few yards away from the action. That translates to a lack of aggression at the catch point, as well. Too often forced to dive at the ball carrier due to a lack of anticipation and quick moves to get in position. Even when play recognition is there he doesnt attack. Always seems to be trailing or a step let. Lacks range and limited athletically.
Frey couldnt finish either of his first two seasons due to shoulder and leg injuries, eventually receiving a sixth-year of eligibility from the NCAA. The 2011 first-team All-Big East pick (two interceptions, eight pass break-ups) must prove short-area quickness to handle coverage responsibilities to be a starter at the next level, but his secure tackling and intelligence make him a mid-round pick as at least a potential long-time reserve and special teams ace.
Future Hall of Famer
A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
An impact player with the ability/intangibles to become a Pro Bowl player. Expect to start immediately except in a unique situation (i.e. behind a veteran starter).
A quality player who will contribute to the team early on and is expected to develop into a starter. A reliable player who brings value to the position.
A prospect with the ability to make team as a backup/role player. Needs to be a special teams contributor at applicable positions. Players in the high range of this category might have long-term potential.
A player with solid measurables, intangibles, college achievements, or a developing skill that warrants an opportunity in an NFL camp. In the right situation, he could earn a place on a 53-man roster, but most likely will be a practice squad player or a camp body.