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#CFBTop20: No. 18, Alabama S Landon Collins

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  • By NFL.com
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Alabama coaches privately regard Landon Collins' talent in the same realm with that of two previous first-round picks at the same position: Mark Barron of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix of the Green Bay Packers.

Collins is more physical than Clinton-Dix in run support, though his range in deep coverage isn't quite as strong as the Green Bay Packers' top pick. Collins also gives the Crimson Tide outstanding special teams play. After finishing second on the team in tackles behind C.J. Mosley last year with 70, Collins will be looked upon as the veteran leader in the UA secondary this fall. The junior will be heavily scouted.

Pulling back the curtain on the vote

Perhaps no player was more difficult to rank than Collins. He landed in the top 10 (fifth, seventh) by two of our analysts and went unranked by two others.

What some of our analysts are saying about Collins

"He has the size to bang in the box and the athleticism to make plays from the backend." -- Daniel Jeremiah

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"Instinctive ball hawk with a knack for creating disruption in the backend." -- Bucky Brooks

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"The best player on the nation's most consistently strong defense, Collins will step into more of a leadership role this fall. He's also the top safety in the country." -- Chase Goodbread

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"A lot of people think Collins is better than a few of the Crimson Tide's past first-round safeties. It's easy to see why with his blend of speed, quickness and power on the backend." -- Bryan Fischer

Where do fans rank Collins?

We asked Twitter and Facebook users who they considered the best player in college football. Collins received a surprising 8 percent of the more than 19,000 votes. It's a pretty big number for a player who doesn't play a skill position, but it probably shows the power of Roll Tide.

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