School: South Alabama
Jeremy Reaves is a great football player. He makes plays all over the field whether on the back-end or up at the line of scrimmage. He has good feet and hips which help him roam as the free safety. As a former offensive player, he has great ball skills. Reaves has a good burst and the agility to break on the ball and flip the field at anytime. He also has the instincts to make big plays when needed. He is a natural play-maker and leader.
He is more than willing to help in the run game. Reaves can come down hill and weave through traffic with the best of them. His feet and vision really help him excel in this area. However, getting to the ball is not enough for him. He is a big time hitter and loves every second of it. Reaves will deliver a blow to anyone; there is no prejudice in his game. His run stopping ability adds to his value as a free safety, but he is a very good football player overall.
Even though his run defense is a big part of his game, teams will try to take advantage of his aggressive nature. He has to develop more discipline so he does not bite on play action. If a free safety falls for some eye candy, the offense will be walking away with six. Reaves will have to increase his film study and the mental aspect of his game. He needs to learn tendencies and tricks so he does not lose his aggressiveness.
He does not have the overall size or length that is preferred in the NFL. He will need to put on some more muscle to sustain a full season. Reaves will also have to prove he can play with the best. His length may be a knock on him, but I believe that is a nice way to say he played at a small school against lesser competition. He will need to make a name for himself in camp, and he needs to keep his head above water early. If he falls behind, Reaves can get lost in the shuffle.
How He Fits
Jeremy Reaves fits what the Packers and Pettine are building. He is a very good physical football player with the “dawg mentality” they are looking to add. He compliments the attitude and style of play of Pettine. He is a leader, and he makes others around him better. He will be able to make an immediate impact on special teams. As the season goes on, I see him becoming one of those guys a coach can not keep off the field. The Packers have a lot of success with players coming from smaller schools. I think Reaves could be next on that list.
5th – 7th