NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: South Carolina FS/CB D.J. Swearinger
|03.05.13 at 8:46 am ET|
WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that might be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2013 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.
Position: Free safety/cornerback
School: South Carolina
Weight: 208 pounds
Achievements: 2012 All-SEC second team (coaches, AP)
What he brings: Swearinger became known as an aggressive, hard-hitting safety for South Carolina over the last four years. His speed and acceleration have been noted as strong points for him. Swearinger is on the shorter side for a safety, but scouts agree that his overall strong build mostly makes up for that. Though he moved back and forth between cornerback and safety this past year, he projects more as a safety, and Rob Rang of CBS Sports notes concerns about his ability to change directions fluidly enough to play cornerback well. Swearinger has played both free and strong safety.
Where the Patriots could get him: Round 2
Notes: Swearinger had 79 tackles, second most on the Gamecocks, last season, and a team-leading seven pass breakups. He was suspended for a hit on a defenseless receiver and has also drawn penalties for hits to the upper chest and head during his time at South Carolina. His physical play is a positive for him if he keeps it under control, but it could be a negative if it draws penalties or results in injuries to himself.
Video: Here’s a collection of plays by Swearinger.