FanPost

Are first round safeties more likely to pan out?

This has been getting a lot of discussion lately, particularly in the Kenny Vaccaro mock draft thread. Are safeties taken in the first round more likely to be quality NFL players than first round guys at other positions?

Let's look at the Marvin Lewis era first round safeties to see:

2002: #8 Roy Williams, #24 Ed Reed

2003: #16 Troy Polamalu

2004: #5 Sean Taylor

2005: none

2006: #7 Michael Buff, #8 Donte Whitner, #16 Jason Allen

2007: #6 LaRon Landry, #19 Michael Griffin, #21 Reggie Nelson, #24 Brandon Meriweather

2008: #31 Kenny Phillips

2009: none

2010: #5 Eric Berry, #14 Earl Thomas

2011: none

2012: #7 Mark Barron, #29 Harrison Smith

That's 16 first round safeties in 13 years, of which 2 are sure-fire hall of famers. Sean Taylor might have been as well, if not for his untimely death. The rest are mostly solid NFL players, though there are a couple busts. Barron, Smith, Berry, and Thomas have all played exceptionally well. The 2006-2008 picks weren't so great, but most of them are still starters in the NFL. Some may question whether a guy was worth a top 10 pick in some cases (Roy Williams, LaRon Landry, etc) but almost everyone on this list was a solid NFL starter.

So what do you think? Are safeties that go in the first round as risky as any other position?

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Cincy Jungle's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Cincy Jungle's writers or editors.

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