Photo of John Cyprien
Drafted By: Jaguars
  • Round 2
  • Pick 1
  • Overall 33

Combine Results

Grade
90.6 ?
  • 38.5 INCH
    Top Performer
Blue Star  =  Combine Top Performer

Draft Analysis:

"Makes a ton of sense to me. He's an enforcer in the box, and that's what (the Jaguars) are looking for. He will play the role of tough guy in the middle of the field." -- Mike Mayock

  • 6'0" Height
  • 31 3/4" Arm Length
  • 217LBS. Weight
  • 10 1/4" Hands

Overview

Another talented safety from the Miami area, Cyprien did not attend the "U" but instead made a name for himself under Mario Cristobal at FIU. The interchangeable safety is a talker on the field and never plays half speed, as he showed during unpadded practices at the Senior Bowl.


The North Miami Beach native earned honorable mention All-Sun Belt notice as a true freshman, playing every game and picking up seven starts; he ranked second on the team with 78 tackles while also picking off one pass, breaking up three others, and forcing two fumbles. There was no sophomore slump, as he led the Panthers with 113 tackles (three for loss) while intercepting another pass, recording six pass breakups, and creating three fumbles. Before the 2011 season, Cyprien claimed the number seven jersey previously worn by 2011 Tampa Bay Buccaneers' seventh-round pick Anthony Gaitor (he switched from the 25 sweater). While his tackle total decreased in his junior season (81), his tackles for loss (5.5) and passes defended (one INT, eight PBU) rose on his way to a second straight second-team All-Sun Belt honor. His 11-tackle, two-pass-breakup effort against Louisville early in the year didn't escape the notice of scouts, even with teammate T.Y. Hilton lighting up the Cardinals as a receiver and returner for 268 all-purpose yards.


In 2012, Cyprien drew enough recognition with his play to earn a Senior Bowl invitation. On the way to becoming FIU's all-time leading tackle, Cyprien notched 93 total tackles his senior year, including 3.5 for loss. He added five pass breakups and four interceptions, along with one forced fumble.

Analysis

Strengths

Looks and plays like a strong in-the-box safety with solid thickness throughout his build. Holds his ground against blocks from bigger opponents, and also runs through traffic to wrap up ballcarriers inside (sometimes as a fast edge blitzer). Possesses enough speed and athleticism to cover ground as a zone defender in the back half and line up against slot receivers inside. Closes on stretch runs and quick throws to outside receivers even when playing well back from the line. Beats receiver blocks with quickness or strength. His secure tackling in those situations is also notable, as he brings some attitude into his attempts unlike other defensive backs in this class. Used as a blitzer on run and pass plays, can overpower running back blocks.

Weaknesses

Doesn't have elite range or the height/length combination to play as a single-deep safety. Quick enough to make a hit after the catch when deep, but is often a step slow to recognize the pass coming into his area. Aggressive in coverage, he can be sucked up by play action and will jump underneath routes, allowing plays over the top. Lacks elite change of direction and quickness in man coverage, and does not recover like a corner if beaten by a quick move off the line or in space.

NFL Comparison

Jordan Babineaux

Bottom Line

One of the hardest-hitting safeties in the 2013 draft class, Cyprien offers enough range to be reliable in box coverage while displaying an aggressive mentality againt ball carriers and receivers. He plays smart, and that might be the most improtant trait when looking at safeties. However, despite it being unique, Cyprien doesn't have a very well known name ... yet.
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Grade Title Draft (Round) Description
96-100 Future Hall of Famer Top Pick A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
85-95 Immediate Starter 1st 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).
70-84 Eventual Starter 2nd-3rd 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.
50-69 Draftable Player 4th-7th 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.
20-49 Free Agent UDFA 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.

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