Quin Blanding (S, Virginia) – 80

Blanding has prototypical size and range for an NFL free safety.  Virginia plays him most often in the deep, centre-field role, although he is also comfortable in Cover 2.  He is very adept in zone coverage, where he identifies threats smoothly and rapidly.  Virginia does not ask him to do much by the way of man coverage but, when he does, he looks comfortable matched up with TEs and WRs alike.  His ball skills are just OK, I feel; for a player with his range, in his position, you would like to see more interceptions and there are times when he will misjudge the ball completely.  In run support, he is very reliable.  No one is going to mistake him for Landon Collins or Keanu Neal as a tackler but he doesn’t miss many either – he wraps up consistently and is technically sound.  I don’t see Blanding as a difference maker in the NFL but, if he were your starting free safety, he certainly wouldn’t be a liability.  As such, I have a mid Day-2 grade on him at this stage of the process.

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