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2015 NFL Draft: Lance Zierlein's top 10 safeties

With the first wave of free agency over, NFL teams are turning more attention to setting their boards in anticipation of the 2015 NFL Draft. With that in mind, College Football 24/7 is releasing Lance Zierlein's top-10 lists at each position -- today it is safeties. To view Zierlein's full scouting report on each prospect in's Draft Tracker, click on the player's name.

Positions: QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | OLs | DLs | Edge rushers | CBs | Safeties

1. Landon Collins, Alabama

Zierlein's bottom line: Collins is a tempo-setter who can energize a defense with his downhill, aggressive style. He is at his best when he can attack rather than sit back in coverage and process. Collins' tackling, pursuit angles and speed to the sideline can help a defense shut down rushing attacks, but his inconsistencies in coverage will be tested by NFL offenses.

2. Derron Smith, Fresno State

Zierlein's bottom line: Lacks ideal size for the position, but checks off just about every other box teams will be looking for. Smith's ability to match up in space against slot receivers and his willingness to get downhill and tackle will be coveted. Smith must learn to play under control as a tackler, but he should have a shot to come in and compete for a starting-safety or slot-corner job quickly.

3. Jaquiski Tartt, Samford

Zierlein's bottom line: Tartt has terrific size and is a physical tackler but he must show that he can handle coverage responsibilities. Despite playing 2-deep and single-high coverage, Tartt's size and aggressiveness as a tackler might be best utilized around the line of scrimmage or in a "robber" scheme. Tartt has the size, athleticism and overall talent to be an NFL starter.

4. Anthony Harris, Virginia

Zierlein's bottom line: Productive three-year starter with above-average instincts and football intelligence. Was an interchangeable safety, playing both deep and in run support, but lacks the bulk, physicality and sure tackling to make a living in the box in the NFL. Harris has some coverage limitations in man, but his skills will get him drafted and should also earn him a starting spot fairly quickly.

5. Adrian Amos, Penn State

Zierlein's bottom line: Amos checks all the boxes when it comes to strong football intelligence, a willingness to digest tape and cover skills. The biggest question is whether or not he can fit with a coordinator looking for playmakers and chance-takers. He must prove that he can play with greater overlap. Amos' scheme versatility is a big plus, but I wouldn't ask him to play inside the box very often.

6. Damarious Randall, Arizona State

Zierlein's bottom line: Randall is considered undersized for the safety position and some teams have him projected as a cornerback. While he has the speed and athletic traits to transition to cornerback, his cover skills and technique need quite a bit of work to be ready for the NFL level. Randall has a nose for the ball and a strong desire to make an aggressive tackle in space, so there could still be teams that give him a legitimate shot at safety, where he carries a higher draft grade.

7. Kurtis Drummond, Michigan State

Zierlein's bottom line: Drummond is a bag of mismatched parts. He has the ball skills and closing burst of a starting NFL free safety, but his instincts and tackling could scare teams away from viewing him as a single-high center fielder. He's not physical enough to play around the line of scrimmage, so his draft position will ultimately rest on how teams weigh his ball skills against his instincts.

8. Imoan Claiborne, Northwestern State (La.)

Zierlein's bottom line: Confident, ascending press-cover cornerback with the foot quickness and hips to match receivers off the line of scrimmage and in tight quarters. He's a willing tackler with decent recovery burst, but his questionable long speed and lack of premium size could turn him into a solid slot corner in the league.

9. Donald Celiscar, Western Michigan

Zierlein's bottom line: Physical, ball-hawking cornerback who is at his best in bump-and-run coverage. Celiscar allowed just 35.7 percent of passes his way to be completed in 2014 and posted 33 passes defensed and seven interceptions over the last two seasons. His ball skills are no fluke, but his lack of deep speed and fluidity could limit his draft standing and force him into a zone-based defense. It's hard to get a read on his open-field instincts, but it wouldn't be a surprise to see a team consider him at safety in the pros.

10. Gerod Holliman, Louisville

Zierlein's bottom line: One-year starter at free safety, posting outrageous ball-production numbers. While Jairus Byrd of the New Orleans Saints is the NFL comparison from a ball-skills standpoint, Holliman doesn't show Byrd's fire or competitiveness. A feast or famine free safety whose lack of field discipline will be more heavily exploited in the NFL, Holliman's ball skills and instincts will surely excite teams, even though his rumored lack of football character could sabotage the talent.

*Follow Lance Zierlen on Twitter **@LanceZierlein.*

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