Eric Berry, CB
- Height: 5-foot-11
- Weight: 203 pounds
- School: Tennessee
Not much went right in Knoxville over the past three seasons, but Tennessee managed to produce one of the best collegiate defensives backs in the past decade. A two-time unanimous All-American and almost certain top-five pick, Berry broke a 37-year-old Tennessee record by compiling 222 return yards on interceptions in his first season, was a freshman All-American and was named the SEC Defensive Freshman of the Year by The Sporting News. A team captain as a sophomore, Berry tied for the national lead with seven interceptions for 265 yards, and he finished his career nine yards shy of the all-time NCAA interception return record held by Florida State's Terrell Buckley. Berry has often been compared to Baltimore Ravens All-Pro Ed Reed, and like Reed, has elite football instincts for a safety. Besides being intelligent and baiting quarterbacks into bad throws, Berry is extremely fast - his 4.47 time at the combine was third among safeties. A team won't have to worry about whether it's already stocked at free or strong safety - Berry is versatile enough to play either position, though he was primarily a strong safety in college. He had minor trouble with his left shoulder in the past, but nothing that should cause concern. Berry got to play for longtime pro defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin as a junior, something that only helped him become a more cerebral player. Berry was honored with the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's top defensive back at the end of his final college season, and he has a bit of a recent legacy to live up to - two of the last three winners played for a Super Bowl winner the following season. While that seems unlikely given how high Berry will go, his ability to transform a team's defense shouldn't be questioned.
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