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Ask 5: Who's the safest prospect you've studied this season?

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Matt Cashore / USA TODAY Sports
Jaylon Smith leads Notre Dame with 98 tackles this season.

Prospects aren't flawless, but some have a lower risk factor than others. With that in mind, I reached out to five NFL personnel executives and asked them to identify the safest prospect they've studied this season. Here are their answers.

College Football 24/7 Hot Topics:

Executive 1: Baylor DT Andrew Billings
"For me, it's Billings. Worst case is he's a solid, disruptive starter. Best case -- he's an Aaron Donald-type game-plan wrecker."

Executive 2: Notre Dame LB Jaylon Smith
"Jaylon Smith. Three-down player, can cover and rush. Dominant player in all phases."

Executive 3: Smith
"The Notre Dame linebacker. He's smart, tough and he'll be an immediate plug-and-play (weakside) linebacker. He can play on all three downs."

Executive 4: Ole Miss OT Laremy Tunsil
"Very good player. Plug-and-play left tackle. (There's) not much to improve on except body development. Makeup is good enough. He's a better college player than (Luke) Joeckel, (Jake) Matthews and especially (Eric) Fisher."

Executive 5: Oregon DL DeForest Buckner
"He's just solid as hell. He's big and strong, one of those guys who can play 10 years. He can run down the line of scrimmage and dominate the interior. He's not a great pass rusher, but he's sneaky."


» Sources Tell Us: Scout says he wouldn't draft Baylor's Oakman in first three rounds


Verdict: That's two votes for Smith and one vote apiece for Billings, Tunsil and Buckner.

Conclusion: I'm a big fan of the players mentioned above. While Buckner is a senior, the other players mentioned are underclassmen that have until a Jan. 18 deadline to decide whether to apply for early entry into the 2016 draft or return to school for their senior seasons. Smith and Tunsil are two of the most talented players at their positions that I've studied over the last couple years.

Follow Daniel Jeremiah on Twitter at @MoveTheSticks.

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