Army All-American Evaluation: Tony Jefferson

Recruiting coverage at Sooner Illustrated is still going as we look to bring fans the latest in Oklahoma recruiting news. Today, we will give you a brief overview of Oklahoma commit Tony Jefferson from Eastlake High School in California during the US Army All American game.

US Army All-American Game Evaluation-DB Tony Jefferson
Commitment: Oklahoma (January enrollee) 

Though Jefferson was not in the starting line up, he did get significant playing time. Playing the strong safety position, the 6-foot-1, 201-pound Jefferson was doing plenty of coverage in the passing game against the East. 

As for mechanics, Jefferson has nice hips and comes out of his breaks strong, helping him to be ready to make a play. In the red zone on one occasion, in man coverage, he was on covering a receiver on an out route and on that play, two things we evident.

One, he regains his footing quickly to set up for the break and two, closing speed was good as well. Aside from the passing game, one other positive for sure is that he has no problem getting involved in the run game.

On more than five occasions, Jefferson was the second or third player in on the tackle. And while that is an aspect of the game in which he is strong, it also factors into his weakness.

Because of his aggressive nature being a run-first type, he sometimes can be fooled when the quarterback is forced out of the pocket. Along with that, there were a few occasions where he was responsible for help over the top, but was caught up in the backfield action. So, help was a little late. In defense of this statement, Jefferson's closing speed will help him out a lot. 

Of course, depending on the defensive scheme some of these faults may work out for him. With his frame, he could hold more weight and end up playing an outside linebacker position. But, if he intends to stay at defensive back and excel in the Big 12, he will need to work on coverage skills.

Quote from Jefferson: "This game was huge and this will definitely prepare me for the next level. The game was fast and was played with the best athletes in the country. It (the game) gave me a clear indication of what I need to work on and a taste of how it is going to be, but I was comfortable out there today.
"I start school in two weeks at Oklahoma and I'm ready."

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