Continuing on with our reports on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' draft picks and a few of their undrafted free agents, we examine cornerback Keith Tandy out of West Virginia today.
Impression: A solid athlete with a strong frame, good ball skills and natural turn-and-run ability. At times, he will struggle to find the football in man and is raw with his footwork, but he has the talent to warrant a later round pick as a potential inside zone cover man.
Tandy's story is one of redemption. Things didn't go well early, and Keith had to earn his way back by proving himself on the field. Obviously, he took full advantage of his opportunity. While at West Virginia he had 13 interceptions and 24 pass breakups. Most of them coming in his last two years. He has a nose for the football and he gets in positions to make plays. He's not afraid to take on ball carriers as evidenced by his 188 tackles. Congratulations Keith!
Tandy is an instinctive, physical zone corner suited for Tampa's zone-cover scheme. Also is an aggressive special-teams "gunner."
Positives: Best fit is in a zone scheme and lacks the vertical speed to shadow elite receivers. Keeps the ball and man in front of him in zone and might be a candidate to convert to safety. Thickly built for a corner and closes with intent, chasing laterally and is effective bringing down bigger targets. Negatives: Zone-specific prospect who is likely only a fit in nickel or dime packages with predominantly man-to-man teams. Not consistent with his footwork, is a bit choppy in transition and is slow to find the ball on deep routes.
What he brings: Tandy doesn't have great man-to-man cover skills, but he's instinctive, has decent range and he flashes the ability to make plays in coverage.
Positives -- A bone crushing hitter who can scare receivers like a fierce middle linebacker... Not elite height, but great build, nicely filled out... Great tackler on defense and special teams... A poor man's Dre Kirkpatrick, a corner who is solid in coverage and an excellent tackler... Raw coverage
ability that can be improved with coaching at the next level... Good instincts on when to break to the ball... Has fluid hips and good recovery speed... Enjoys getting physical with receivers and making catches difficult... Possesses good upside and the versatile ability to play multiple positions... Has similar qualities to Kevin Barnes (third round pick of the Washington Redskins in 2009), good physical nature but needs to develop in coverage... Worth a day three pick as a contributor on special teams and a developmental corner.
Negatives -- Very raw player who is not technically sound... Not a natural corner, may need to play safety at the next level... Does not possess elite speed to keep up with vertical receivers... Lacks great height or arm length to fight with taller receivers... Struggles with mirroring receivers and will typically allow balls to be caught and then make the tackle... Appears to hesitate in coverage when the ball is thrown which prevents him from breaking up passes... Prefers to play in off or zone coverage, feels the need to read the quarterback rather than the receiver... Can be beat with double moves, or pump fakes as he is often staring in the backfield... Does not always take the best angles... Needs to play smarter to compensate for his lack of speed if he is going to succeed at the next level.