—Bates is a quick, fluid, agile athlete who shows up in coverage looking like a cornerback.
—He's a hitter and doesn't mind throwing his frame around to make hits. He packs a punch.
—He's versatile enough to play any safety spot and can even lock up in man coverage if needed against slot receivers and tight ends.
—Teams running a zone defense should put a premium on Bates thanks to his range and instincts.
—Does a great job finding and getting to the football.
—Bates was just a two-year starter at Wake Forest and left school following his redshirt sophomore season.
—He has a lean frame with short arms (31 ⅝") and might need to add bulk.
—Reckless style of play is a concern with his frame and past injuries.
—Can get sucked into the box on play-action and misdirection.
—Saw his interceptions drop from five in 2016 to just one in 2017.
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Jessie Bates is one of the better true coverage safeties in the 2018 draft class. He identifies routes well and is athletic enough to get into position to make a play on the ball or limit targets. A team needing an over-the-top safety early in Round 2 should be all over Bates.
GRADE: 6.75 (Early Round 2)
PRO COMPARISON: Reggie Nelson, Oakland Raiders