Antoine Winfield - SI Big Board No. 50
Antoine Winfield Jr. from Minnesota is our first draft prospect that we'll break down on this journey to the NFL Draft.
Facts and Stats:
1. He's 5'9 (5096), 205 pounds and played mostly at free safety for Minnesota.
2. His Dad, Antoine Winfield, was a fierce competitor and tough SOB, whom the Redskins were interested in signing earlier in the Mike Shanahan era, if memory serves.
3. In 2017 and 2018, he suffered season ending injuries after four games in each season.
4. Per The SIS Football Rookie Handbook, Winfield allowed 40 receptions when targeted 74 times at Minnesota in 33 games. He allowed 438 yards, a 5.9 yards per target and racked up nine interceptions with SEVEN coming in 2019.
5. Winfield was charged by SIS with allowing only four touchdowns in his college career while making 168 tackles, 6.5 for a loss but he did have a tackling issue last year. He was charged with 15 broken tackles, which is defined as either missed or failure to bring down.
How does he fit the Redskins? (Scheme, Position need) :
The Redskins addressed free safety with the short-term free agent signing on Sean Davis but he's only on a one-year deal and missed almost all of last year in Pittsburgh.
As mentioned, Winfield had some tackling issues but Davis also has struggled in that area.
If Winfield Jr, is around in the early third round (value), I could see the Redskins going with a physical, hard nosed player like Winfield Jr. based on his overall skillset and his bloodlines.
As you'll see in the video below, Winfield Jr. has a nose for the football through the air and with his physical play. That's the first thing that jumped out.
The other thing for me was his diagnosis and closing speed. He zeroes in on a ball carrier or the quarterback, runs downhill and exploded into the backfield.
SI.com/EDS Football's Kevin Hanson's spin: "Even though he lacks ideal height and length and missed all but four games each in the 2017 and '18 seasons, Winfield Jr. is an instinctual “student of the game” with an NFL pedigree. A sure tackler with outstanding ball skills, Winfield Jr. led the Golden Gophers in both tackles (88) and interceptions (seven) in 2019."
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Chris Russell is the Publisher of RedskinsReport.com & Sports Illustrated's Washington Redskins channel. He can be heard on 106.7 The FAN in the Washington D.C. area and world-wide on Radio.com. Chris also hosts the "Locked on Redskins" Podcast and can be read via subscription to Warpath Magazine. You can e-mail Chris at russellmania09@Gmail.com or follow him on Twitter at @Russellmania621.