Expect the Buccaneers to be looking to improve their safety position in 2016, and one player at the East-West Shrine practices that has been standing out this week is former Boston College safety Justin Simmons. The Stuart, Florida native led the Eagles with five interceptions in 2015, and had seven total during his four seasons. Simmons also played some cornerback due to injury as junior and showed his value by also being a special teams player all four seasons for Boston College. Simmons, who measures 6-3 and 201 pounds had been making plays all week at Shorecrest Prep and has caught the eyes of a number of NFL scouts and GMs in attendance.
Justin Simmons vs. FSU – Photo: Getty Images
Below is a quick Q&A with Simmons following practice this week.
(Where do you project yourself playing at the next level?)
“I feel like I can do both, but if I had to project I would say free safety. I am more of that high-roll read the quarterback, read the coverage, go make a play on the ball safety. And also coming to fill run alleys in the running game.”
(Did you play special teams for Boston College?)
“All four years, I played special teams. This past season I played kickoff and punt all season long. I was right tackle gunner for our punt team, a very key role.”
(What areas of your game would you like to improve on before the NFL Draft in April?)
“I Would like to improve on my man coverage specifically. More importantly my off coverage. I haven’t had too much work at it. I need to feel more comfortable with my cushion and being able to know in my bubble breaks and opening my hips and bering able to run with the receiver. Or even the tight end. So I need to work on my coverage.”
(What players have stood out to you this week at practice)
“I thought the East team backs, like Ross Brandon from Maryland is really shifty. Obviously Keenan Reynolds (Navy), leading touchdown recipient is a great guy. Runs hard, runs fast. Receiver wise Tajee Sharpe, great hands and route runner. Those are guys standing out the most to me right now.
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]
I think we should seriously look at taking a Safety between the 3rd and 4th rounds. Go Bucs!
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