Derwin James is as versatile as they come

[Editor's Note: This story was originally published on PFF.com on July 28, 2017. All words & graphics are mine.]


  • FSU S Derwin James burst onto the college football scene in 2015 as his 91.0 overall grade as a true freshman is still the highest grade for an individual safety season in the PFF College Football Era. That mark has propelled him to a PFF Day 1 projection for the 2018 NFL draft.

  • James can tackle with the best of them, having missed only seven tackles through his two-year career to date, on a combined 793 snaps, his tackling efficiency number of 11.0 ranks No. 2 among draft-eligible safeties.

  • Despite missing the majority of the season a year ago with an injury, his prowess in stopping opposing offenses has been on display his entire career. His 22 run stops in 2015 were top 10 in the ACC while his four total stops on just 100 snaps a season ago were No. 2 among all ACC safeties with 190 snaps or fewer played in 2016.

  • Solid in coverage in 2015 as well, James finished No. 5 among all ACC safeties by averaging 21.7 snaps in coverage per reception allowed. He also ranked No. 6 among 29 qualified ACC safeties in 2015 by allowing just 0.49 yards per snap in coverage.



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