NFL Draft Impact: Deone Bucannon
Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Ron, the lead editor of FantasyFootballOverdose.Com – prime source of NFL news and rumors. You can follow @NFLRankings via Twitter or via Google+ for more updates
The Arizona Cardinals have had a very strong defense for years, and much of that was due in part to safety Adrian Wilson. As a safety, Adrian Wilson was one of the best in the league every single season that he played. Though out his long and storied 12 year career, Wilson was a beast. He totaled 839 tackles, 54.0 tackles for a loss, 22.5 sacks, 26 interceptions, 13 forced fumbles, 6 fumble recoveries, 82 passes defended, 4 return touchdowns, and one blocked punt over these seasons.
He is also the record holder for the most sacks by a defensive back in NFL history, and played a huge role on the Cardinals Super Bowl run of 2009. In 2013, after several injuries and a dwindling future career in the NFL, Wilson was released by the Cardinals and since then, the Cardinals have suffered. Since the loss of Wilson, the safety position has been awful in Arizona, and they have been looking for a replacement. This is where Deone Bucannon comes into play.
Bucannon is strongly thought to be the best safety in the 2014 draft class, and for good reason. In 2013, Bucannon showed why he deserved to go in the first round. He started every college game, totaled 114-1-6 with 4.5 tackles for losses, forced three lost fumbles, led the Pac-12 in tackles, and tied for the Pac-12 lead in interceptions. This essentially means that Bucannon can fit anywhere into the Cardinals safety scheme.
On one hand, many see him as being a tighter type of player. He could start a little back further of the line, and get a good enough jump to match receivers step for step and break up plays. Aside from this, many also see him as being more of play making defender. He is a bigger player and he is very athletic, and due to this, it is very likely that his pass defense style will be less physical; instead, he would be able to focus on the ball and force many turnovers and interceptions. Other than his offensive skills, Bucannon will also fill a utility player role in Arizona. In college, Bucannon also played on the kick off and the punt coverage teams because of his speed and size
Today’s NFL has started becoming more versatile. Currently, there are teams that are trying to push a morn run-focused offensive plan. Teams like the 49ers and Redskins are completely focused on the run, and rarely pass. On the other hand, there are also many teams which have seen resurgence in their passing games and will be focused on airing out the ball in the future.
Teams like the Patriots, Broncos, Ravens, Packers, Saints, and more all focus on the pass, and rarely run the ball. Because of this, a strong safety that can play both the pass and the run is needed to create the maximum amount of coverage. Because of Bucannon’s ability to cover any type of play and end off plays with strong tackles, there should not be a doubt in his ability. If he is healthy, he will start every game in 2014.