Breakdown: 49ers Select Jaquiski Tartt

Everything you need to know about the San Francisco 49ers’ second-round selection of defensive back Jaquiski Tartt out of Samford from Scout's college and pro football experts.

Awaiting Image
Jaquiski Tartt
Samford / 6'1 / 223 lbs
  • S
  • [2] #14

Analysis

Tartt started in 34 of the 44 games he played while at Samford. He's a big and long free safety prospect that finished with 277 tackles, 10.5 tackles for a loss, six interceptions and 20 pass deflections over his career. Tartt is dependable from the back end. He was impressive against his peers at the Senior Bowl. For his size he has excellent range and ball skills.

Dave-Te' Thomas Player Evaluation

Instant Analysis from Scout's Jamie Newberg:

San Fran makes a second defensive pick, this time drafting Samford safety Jaquiski Tartt. It’s not a deep position but a position of need for the 49ers. Tartt started in 34 of the 44 games he played while at Samford. He's a big and long free safety prospect that finished with 277 tackles, 10.5 tackles for a loss, six interceptions and 20 pass deflections over his career. Tartt is dependable from the back end. He was impressive against his peers at the Senior Bowl. For his size he has excellent range and ball skills.

Report from NFL Scouting Services' Dave-Te' Thomas:

Jaquiski Tartt has outstanding size for a free safety and some teams could look to shift him to the strong side, as he is the elite performer in the secondary playing inside the box. Other teams that utilize the Cover-2 scheme could try to bulk him up for a possible move to weak-side linebacker, as his frame is still developing and has room for at least another 15 pounds without the additional weight affecting his overall quickness.

Tartt’s success as a downhill player is due to his in-stride acceleration. He is such a smooth, athletic mover that the staff has great confidence in his ability to play at the line of scrimmage. He runs with a normal stride and has the change of direction agility and body control to make plays at the opposite side of the field (has made 38 touchdown-saving tackles among his 277 total hits).

Tartt is a quick read-and-react type of player who is very decisive in recognizing the runs and passes in front of him. He is not the type that a quarterback can “sucker” out of position with misdirection or play action. He shows good anticipation and knowledge for taking angles when closing and has a knack for stepping into the passing lanes, evident by his interceptions and ability to keep the receivers from getting into their routes (with his press coverage skills, he prevented his assignment from getting to 75 of 182 passes into his area).

While most safeties are not required to handle one-on-one assignments, Tartt is a different breed, a defensive back with outstanding ability to mirror and run with the receiver over the middle and down field. He is often around the football, thanks to valid instincts, and shows the loose hips to angle and flow to the ball, making 18 touchdown-saving tackles out of his assigned area in pass coverage.

He has excellent foot quickness and flexibility in his backpedal, along with the timed speed to easily run with backs, slots and tight ends, demonstrating the good footwork out of his breaks, along with the burst and recovery speed to accelerate and recover when a receiver happens to get behind him.

With his footwork, he always seems to be in proper alignment to make plays on either the ball or the man, as he has the eyes to make quick reads and doing a great job looking up threats to get a good jump on the ball after the throw. He plays with leverage and excels at holding up the tight ends, backs and slot receivers working underneath, showing the low pad level and range to close in an instant.

Due to his years playing basketball, the Samford product is very smooth in his retreat skills, showing ease of movement heading backwards and never takes extra steps in transition. He is quick with his feet and has the ability to completely flip his hips from one side to another. He is exceptionally smooth coming out of his breaks and has the hip turn and flexibility to be explosive closing on the ball. He does play a lot in the press, but is too agile, balanced and smooth when moving to be considered just an inside-the-box type.

Tartt’s basketball skills come into the limelight with his tremendous success competing for the jump ball (26 passes defended and 75 reroutes/jams as a starter). He possesses outstanding timing and ability to make plays on the ball in flight, thanks to excellent flexibility and ball-adjustment skills. He can elevate in an instant to reach the high point and will not hesitate to sacrifice his body to make the plays in a crowd.

Tartt has a very good feel for run support lanes and takes good angles to shorten the field and get to the flow of the ball in a hurry. When he flies to the football, he does so with intent to punish, leverage and control, whether at the line of scrimmage or in the open field. When taking on ball carriers, he arrives quickly and with purpose, knowing that he has the ability to deliver a blow and snap the runner’s head back.

Jaquiski Tartt Scouting Combine measurables


6-1/221 (4.53 forty)
32 3/8-inch arm length
9 7/8-inch hands
No bench
No vertical jump
10-foot-4 broad jump
No 3-cone drill
No 20-yard shuttle
No 60-yard shuttle

Dave-Te’ Thomas is a sports writer, talent evaluator and scouting personnel consultant for a majority of teams in the National Football League. Thomas runs a scouting information service called NFL Scouting Services and produces THE NFL Draft Report, a publication provided by league headquarters to the media in preparation for the NFL Draft.

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