Many experts consider Minkah Fitzpatrick to be a “can’t miss” prospect who is a projected top-10 if not top-five pick. Many mock drafts have him projected fourth overall to the Cleveland Browns and it is easy to see why.
Fitzpatrick is two-time national champ and All-American who played for Alabama, a known college for creating some of the best NFL prospects, so it’s no surprise that he would be highly coveted. Minkah is a versatile player who has excelled at both the cornerback and safety positions, which makes him appealing to more teams. He can cover outside or the slot, he can play safety or even play as a nickel linebacker, making him a day one starter.
He is NFL-ready and can have an immediate impact on any team that drafts him. The prospect shows great instinct against the pass. In his three-year college career, Minkah registered nine interceptions and blocked 24 passes. He displays quick footwork in transition and can accelerate to top speed quickly. The combination of his acceleration, awareness and athleticism allows him to cover an enormous amount of ground. He doesn’t get beat often, but when he does, he makes up for it in speed. The Alabama safety also displays great discipline and knows how to stay in his zone.
In addition to being a great pass defender, Fitzpatrick is a blitzing threat and can also be used against the run. He can line up in the box and his 16.5 tackles for a loss help paint the picture of his ability to penetrate the offensive line and seek out the ball carrier. He is also a good open field tackler as well as being a physical tackler.
This could be an area of improvement for the prospect. He has a habit of coming in hot and running himself out of a good tackling position, so Fitzpatrick could afford to play with more patience. Another knock at the safety could be his size. Fitzpatrick would pass the test standing at 6’1″ and weighing 202 lbs, but depending on your standards, an ideal safety should be at least 6′ 200 lbs, so he just makes the cut.
In the end, Minkah Fitzpatrick could legitimately be drafted by the Cleveland Browns. They need defensive playmakers and Fitz could fill that role. They could even use him at cornerback, which is another position of need. Just imagine the dangerous duo of Fitzpatrick and Jabrill Peppers for years to come.