ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Falcons selected former California safety Jaylinn Hawkins with the 134th-overall pick in the fourth round of the 2020 NFL Draft.
WHY HE FITS
Given the attrition at the safety position in recent seasons, it makes sense the Falcons would look at add some depth there in the draft. Hawkins has experience playing a variety of roles, and he began his college career as a cornerback. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Hawkins has the size and physicality to play the box safety role the Falcons often utilized with Keanu Neal. He also displayed a reliable nose for the football and recorded 10 interceptions in his final three college seasons, including six picks as a junior.
Chris Trapasso, CBSSports.com
- Grade: A
- Comment: "Hawkins got lost in Ashtyn Davis' shadow but is an instinctive, rangy playmaker in his own right. High-end ball skills and quickness in coverage. Flies downhill in run support too. Not a burner and slender frame. Falcons need all the game-changers they can get in the secondary."
Mike Tanier, Bleacher Report
- Grade: B
- Comment: "Hawkins is a converted wide receiver who is always around the ball. He doesn't have the speed or athleticism of an ideal starting safety, but players like Hawkins have a way of sticking on rosters and making an impact."
"Physical safety whose lack of speed and cover talent could pigeonhole him as a box safety at the next level. His eyes and instincts are good enough in space, but Hawkins just doesn't have the twitch to make enough plays on the football. He's a striker, but not reliable as a "get him down" tackler in the open field and that will work against him. He will need to shine as a special-teams contributor to make a roster," Lance Zierlein writes of Hawkins.
Editor's note: This story will continue to be updated.
With the No. 134 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Atlanta Falcons select California safety Jaylinn Hawkins.