The grades are in. They’re good.
Here’s what some NFL Draft experts said about former Clemson cornerback Andrew Booth Jr. and linebacker Baylon Spector in grading teams for their selections. Booth went in the second round (No. 42 overall) to the Minnesota Vikings and Spector in the seventh (No. 231) to the Buffalo Bills.
Andrew Booth ‘first-round talent’
“First-round caliber talent who fell due to injury during pre-draft process. Lightning quick feet, unhinged hips. Flashes of unreal ball skills. Tackling is hit or miss. Man/zone versatility. Could blossom into star.” — Chris Trapasso of CBS Sports in giving Minnesota an A- for picking Booth.
“Cornerback is one of the team’s biggest needs and it gets a bargain here with Booth, my 26th-ranked prospect, to address it. Booth is an athletic, agile and scheme-diverse cornerback. Being overaggressive has led to a few missed tackles, but he’s physical and willing as a run defender. The former five-star recruit is competitive at the catch point and has outstanding ball skills. Either way, he’s expected to be ready for the start of camp.” — Kevin Hanson of Sports Illustrated in giving Minnesota a B- for picking Booth.
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“The Vikings brought back fading (safety) Patrick Peterson because of hurting depth but they still need to address corner to get the ideal complement to well-rounded Cameron Dantzler. Booth’s size, strength and aggressiveness that add up to big plays on the ball make him an ideal protégé for Peterson.” — Dash Vinnie Iyer of Sporting News on giving Minnesota an A+ for picking Booth.
“The (Minnesota) secondary needed help and it got two immediate contributors in (Georgia safety Lewis) Cine (at No. 32 overall) and Booth, who would have been a first-rounder if not for injuries.” – Chad Reuter of NFL.com in giving Minnesota an overall A grade.
“The Vikings started out by making a puzzling trade, moving down 20 spots in the first round, and not getting much in return. They made the most of their first two selections, though, reloading the secondary with two athletic playmakers in Booth and Cine .” — Luke Easterling of USA Today in giving Minnesota an overall B and calling Booth the team’s “biggest steal.”
“(Booth) was called for just one penalty in 35 college games. Booth is a physical, competitive corner who should be able to play in any scheme. The question is durability. He didn’t participate in pre-draft athletic testing because of a strained quad and double hernia surgery. … He missed time with a hamstring injury and a stinger last year. Booth previously had surgery to repair a tear in his patella tendon and had knee tendonitis in high school. this could be a home run pick.” — Sheil Kapadia of The Athletic in giving Minnesota a B for picking Booth.
Baylon Spector has ‘some upside’
“Spector has some safety-linebacker tweener traits, which hurts his potential ceiling, but he is instinctive and athletic, which can keep him earning an NFL paycheck as a backup and special-teamer.” – The Athletic as part of an overall B grade for Buffalo.
“Rare linebacker prospect on Day 3 who can flip his hips and cover. Play ID’ing ability is noticeably delayed. Block-shedding is average. Checks the size/athleticism boxes. Raw type with some upside.” – Trapasso in giving Buffalo a B- for picking Spector.
“Spector didn’t get a lot of publicity at Clemson but will offer depth and make his name on special teams.” – Chad Reuter in giving Buffalo an overall A grade.
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Todd Shanesy covers Clemson athletics for the USA Today network.
This article originally appeared on Greenville News: NFL Draft expert grades on Clemson’s Andrew Booth Jr., Baylon Spector