ARLINGTON- The 2018 NFL Draft is coming in a couple of weeks. The big names were already discussed so it’s time to keep looking at the underrated prospects. One intriguing prospect is Villanova corner back Malik Reaves.
What does Reaves bring the table? His best attribute is his toughness. Reaves is similar to NFL Safety T.J. Ward because he is a big hitter. Why compare Reaves to a NFL safety? He doesn’t have the necessary speed to be a corner back in the NFL. According to a scouting report from NFL.com, Reaves struggles with man coverage and doesn’t possess great closing speed. The game film proves this assessment is true. It is easy to notice that Reaves can flat-out crush receivers. Some teams don’t possess heavy hitters so any team that needs a big hitting player in the secondary may want to draft Reaves as a sixth or seventh round pick. He is also not afraid to play with pain which was proved by the fact he finished games in 2016 despite a meniscus tear. Reaves must improve on moving more fluently as he moves with rigid motion at times.
Reaves possesses good football instincts. He pays attention to opportunities to use his strength to force incompletions. He can be a weapon against the run if he is close to the line of scrimmage, likely as part of a blitz play. He will likely excel in zone coverage. Reaves will likely need to transition to being a safety in the NFL.
What teams are taking a look at him? It was confirmed that his hometown and favorite team, the Jacksonville Jaguars, are already taking a look at him. Will the local favorite actually be drafted by the Jaguars? This seems like a possibility and the Jaguars faithful may want to get ready to embrace their hometown hero. Reaves was born in Panama City, Florida.