Defense-First: Lions Nab Safety Bullocks

With the team's second round pick (40th overall), the Detroit Lions are not being bashful about their defense-first attitude. The team selected Nebraska's defensive ringleader, safety Daniel Bullocks. Complete review, notes and profile inside.

Full Name: Daniel Bullocks School: Nebraska Pos: S

Ht: 6-0.5 Wt: 212 40: 4.41 Year: 5Sr

Bio: All-Conference selection the past three years. Senior totals included 83/1/10 after 58/5/9 as a junior.

Pos: Hard-working, take-charge leader flying up draft boards. Effectively quarterbacks the secondary, sees the action and has a burst of closing speed to the play. Explodes up the field in run defense and sacrifices his body to make the tackle. Active in zone coverage and displays a good sense of timing.

Neg: Struggles in man-to-man situations and does not display a decisive move to the ball. Not a technique tackler. Takes a lot of missteps and over-pursues the action.

Analysis: A consistent player at Nebraska, Bullocks turned in an outstanding performances at the Senior Bowl and the combine. Offers a good degree of upside and could be a first-team player in the NFL.

How he helps Detroit: The Lions had an interest in Bullocks from the beginning, setting up an Allen Park visit with Big Red product just days after running a 4.38-forty time at the NFL combine. The Seattle Seahawks were so interested in Bullocks that they considered him with the 31st overall pick, but settled on high-flying cornerback Kelly Jennings, who had slid to that spot.

In Detroit's Cover 2 scheme, it is almost necessary to field two strong safeties -- one responsible for each half of a deep secondary zone. The Lions new coaching staff has not been impressed with the game film on current free-safety Terrence Holt, who was unimpressive during his first starting campaign last year. Detroit would pair Bullocks with last year's key free-agent addition, Kenoy Kennedy. The two would bring a speed-induced, hard-hitting presence to the defensive backfield.

According to Seahawks.net's Doug Farrar, "As the only returning Husker defensive back in 2005, Bullocks was recognized as the leader of Nebraska's hard-nosed defense that racked up 46 sacks and 115 tackles for losses -- best in the country. His twin brother Josh was drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the second round of the 2005 draft.

"In addition to his physical style, Bullocks is also a playmaker. During his college career he intercepted 8 passes, recovered 3 fumbles (returning two for touchdowns), forced 5 fumbles and blocked a punt. He also set a school record with 22 pass deflections.

"Projected as a strong safety by most, Bullocks also has the ability to cover serious ground in a two-deep zone, which would be a great fit. Scouting reports tout his great work ethic and ability to improve as a pro."

 
STRENGTHS
 Closing Speed
 Coverage Awareness
 Toughness
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT
 Instincts
 Tackling Ability
The Skinny: Talented fifth year senior who has the potential to get better in the pros. Smart and hard-working... Very solid in zone coverage and run support. Struggles in man-to-man situations. Sometimes overpursues.

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