Photo of Weston Steelhammer
Grade
4.95 ?

Draft Analysis:

  • 6'2" Height
  • 201LBS. Weight

Overview

Possessing one of the best names in football, Steelhammer chose to go the Air Force route instead of following his grandfather's path to West Point. He was recruited by Alabama and Pepperdine to play baseball, and considered playing the national pastime in Colorado Springs, as well. His decision to stick with football, however, proved fruitful. Steelhammer played eight games as a reserve (seven tackles) in 2013 before earning the first of three consecutive first-team All-Mountain West honors as a sophomore (61 tackles, six for loss, three sacks, team-best six interceptions). In 2015, Steelhammer racked up 80 stops, 10.5 for loss, and five more picks, along with seven pass breakups. In his final season with the Falcons, he led the team with 72 tackles, 4.5 for loss, four pass breakups, and tied for third in the FBS with seven interceptions -- giving him an astounding 18 in his career, the most of any current player.

Analysis

Strengths

Utilizes decent backpedal in his coverage and has adequate hip smoothness to transition with route breaks. In man-off coverage, plays the quarterback rather than the receiver. Instinctive with outstanding anticipatory skills. Keys on quarterback's eyes and upper body movement creating optimal response time to play the pass. Ball skills are primo. Always looks to play ahead of the route and take a playmaker's path to the ball. Believes the ball is his. Finished with 18 career interceptions. Triggers quickly when allowed to play downhill. Downhill, physical mindset as a tackler. Form tackler who always sees what he hits.

Weaknesses

Undersized safety with skinny arms. Below NFL weight standards. Can be taken for a ride by lead blockers on perimeter of the line of scrimmage. Needs more weight work. Has to do a better job of taking on blocks. Has short arms and small hands. Missing twitch and acceleration to stay with receivers out of break points. Tries to cheat his lack of speed and quickness with guesses. Desire to make plays will cause cover busts at times. Double moves are his nemesis. Lacks range over the top and can ill-afford a false step when tasked with deep coverage.

Draft Projection

PFA

Bottom Line

Three-year starter with an impressive nose for the ball, but a lack of NFL-caliber speed and size. Steelhammer's ball production is hard to ignore as is his ability to anticipate routes and play one step ahead. However, he lacks reactive athleticism to make up for some of the guess work he will do in coverage. If he can prove to be a quality cover man on special teams and carve out a role as a sub-package cover talent, then he could find himself on a roster within the next couple of years.
-Lance Zierlein
C
Grade Title
9.00-10 Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-9.00 Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99 Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49 Pro Bowl to All-Pro Ability
6.50-6.99 Good NFL Starter with Pro Bowl Potential
6.00-6.49 Chance to become good NFL starter
5.70-5.99 Could become early NFL starter
5.30-5.69 Backup or eventual starter
5.15-5.29 Developmental prospect or special teams potential
5.01-5.14 Back end of the roster
5.00 50/50 Chance of making the roster

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