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Donnie Nickey

DB | (0-0, 220) | Ohio State
By Pro Football Weekly

Notes: Redshirted in 1998. Started 10 games at strong safety in '99 and was a freshman All-American. Started every game at free safety in 2000 and '01. Had 73 tackles, two passes broken up and an interception in '99. Had 64-5-2 in 2000 and 54-3-2 in '01. Right knee scoped after season for meniscus tear. Started all 14 games in 2002 and had 67-2-0 with two fumble recoveries and two blocked kicks.

Positives: Looks the part with good size and OK speed. Big, smart, productive and durable. Very fluid backpedal. Aware in zone coverage. Good range and hands. At times, shows good run support. Passionate player who loves the game and works very hard. Good athletic ability. Agile, flexible and good changing directions. Smart player who can dissect plays quickly and shows a good burst. Makes all the secondary calls. Willing and aggressive hitter and tackler.

Negatives: Average in man-to-man coverage and reacting to the ball. Inconsistent wrapping up tackles and has tackles broken. Not a real ballhawk. Some problems breaking down and shifting weight around the line of scrimmage. Needs to get stronger. Average in the box. Conservative. Not sudden. Plays to speed. Not a sure tackler due to some athletic limitations. More fast than quick.

Summary: Straight-line true free safety looks fluid as a center fielder but is not a man cover guy.

* Player biographies are provided by Pro Football Weekly.