Home > News > Sports > NFL > 2016 NFL Draft: Vonn Bell selected 61st overall by New Orleans Saints

2016 NFL Draft: Vonn Bell selected 61st overall by New Orleans Saints

Vonn Bell - S, Ohio StatePick AnalysisVonn Bell will never bring the hammer down against the run, but in terms of cove


Vonn Bell – S, Ohio State

Pick Analysis

Vonn Bell will never bring the hammer down against the run, but in terms of coverage, he’s arguably the top pure safety in the class. This isn’t a ‘safe’ pick – he willfully admitted to taking plays off when interviewed at the combine, which will definitely be a concern for some. The pick doesn’t really seem to be much of a fit for the Saints either – they owe a lot of money to Jarius Byrd, who is one of the most underrated free safeties in the league anyway. Bell may be deployed as part of a three-safety “big nickel” package, with Kenny Vaccaro moving down into the box, but really, this is a prospect with issues picked by a team that don’t seemingly have much of a need at the position, making this something of a head scratcher. Gur Samuel

Player Analysis

Some view Bell as the top safety in this class, and in terms of understanding his role in coverage, is certainly very strong in that area.  The film constantly leaves me frustrated over and over again with his at times awful effort against the run and lack of hustle.  Watch the Michigan State film, Ohio State’s only loss of the year, from start to finish and you shall see a player who quits on far too many plays, shying away from contact and taking it way too easy.  Players are known to take snaps off, but to do so that much in the most crucial game of the season raises real concerns.  At the combine, Bell was asked frequently about his poor play versus the run and quite bluntly stated “sometimes you get lazy”.  Doesn’t sound like a guy with the right mental attitude required and it’s reflected in his game film, not just this season but before.  Undersized like Joseph, the difference between how they approach their game is night and day.  Another disappointment is a significant drop in the production this year from Bell’s sophomore season.  After posting 92 tackles with 6 INTs and 6 pass breakups, his numbers dropped to 65 tackles and 2 INTs, though in fairness with 9 pass breakups.  More positively, and as referred to before, there’s no doubt that he has good instincts for playing in coverage, an area that a lot of college safeties often struggle a bit with.  The potential to line him up as a 3rd safety or nickel fits a need in every NFL defensive system currently, in addition to playing deep.  His range is good to cover the sidelines, and has a knack for being in the right place at the right time.  He has experience of big games and pressure as with all the other multitude of players the Buckeyes have in this year’s draft class, after being part of the national championship side of a couple seasons ago. (Rebecca Rennie)

Grade C


2016 NFL Draft: Vonn Bell selected 61st overall by New Orleans Saints

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