Penn State Football Movie Review | Why Jaquan Brisker is a top safety in the 2022 NFL Draft | Pennsylvania State Football News

Jaquan Brisker became a true field general during his time at Penn State.

He can cover any position, can get in the box and defend the run, and has the athleticism to chase a 68-yard run after starting on the wrong side of the field.

Listed at 6-foot-1.5 and 206 pounds on Penn State’s pro day, Brisker is a rare height for someone at safety, reminiscent of the former LSU star, No. 6 overall and NFL All-Pro Jamal Adams.

He finished second among all safeties in the NFL Combine with 22 reps off the bench and 11th in the 40-yard dash. He also overcame a poor 34.5-inch vertical jump at the combine with a mark of 38.5 inches on the pro day, which would have tied for second in Indianapolis.

Beyond his physical traits, Brisker has proven time and time again that he studies filmmaking and understands acting as much as anyone.

Various NFL Draft-projection outlets have Brisker with a late first-round and early second-round rating, but nearly all of the top projections have him out of the board on Day 1.

Here’s what makes the former Lackawanna College transfer one of the best at his job.

game recognition






As mentioned above, Brisker has proven his knowledge of the game.

In that game-breaking interception against Wisconsin earlier this year, he starts play in the box, reads quarterback Graham Mertz’s eyes, and floats above the seam road to secure the takeout.

Brisker explained in postgame media that it was a look the Badgers had been trying to get all day, and he knew the fourth pass was heading for the tight end. Obviously, he wasn’t lying.

Midway through the year, Brisker again explained in interviews once during his time at Lackawanna where he told his fellow linebacker what play was coming. This resulted in an interception in a close moment of the game.

Lackawanna head coach Mark Duda told the Daily Collegian last fall that the defense wasn’t called on that play — everything was Brisker.







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On a critical third down late in the second quarter against Iowa this year, Brisker sniffed a wide receiver screen before the ball was even out of the hands of quarterback Spencer Petras.

His speed made the game a total disaster, as Iowa didn’t have enough blockers to cover Brisker.

The receiver and tight end were responsible for the two defenders closest to the sideline. The tight end might have had to see off Brisker and switch assignments, but it’s a tough split-second decision that changes what you’ve been practicing for months.

Brisker came screaming downhill way too fast for an offensive lineman to get in front of him as well.

Physical







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This game could easily have been added under the “game recognition” subheading, but we’ll put it here under physicality.

It’s not often you can say that teams shouldn’t block a defensive back with a tight end or a fullback, but you really shouldn’t block Brisker with a tight end or a fullback.

He saw the screen expand on this play as the Auburn wide receiver took a single step and flew through the tight end to make the tackle for the loss. His use of leverage and contact acceleration is textbook.







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Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker has 89 tackles — the most of any running back in the nation in 2021 by a healthy margin. He didn’t come out of this one from Brisker.

Brisker pushed his feet on contact again, and he held Walker long enough for the rest of the Nittany Lions to watch the takedown.

Cover

Brisker really does nothing wrong. It certainly doesn’t cover badly.

According to PFF, he has the highest coverage level among safeties since 2019 at 92.2 and hasn’t given up a touchdown in 713 coverage snaps (that’s good).

Since 2019, Brisker’s only leading safety in the passer rating is Notre Dame’s Kyle Hamilton, who is expected to land in the first half of the first round of the NFL Draft.







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Brisker excels in man and area coverage. Against Auburn’s Kobe Hudson with the game on the line on fourth base, he won the 1-on-1 battle.

He can use his hands to press just as well as anyone in his place. Hudson and the Auburn faithful likely wanted pass interference on this play, but it appears Hudson pulled Brisker with him after he fell, not the other way around.







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In zone coverage, Brisker uses his closing speed, physicality, game recognition and ball skills.

In this clip against Iowa, he read Petras’ eyes and raced for the ball to quickly shut down what looked like a weak spot in the Penn State area.

Brisker attacked the ball at its peak and deflected the pass in another critical third down.

Outside of Micah Parsons, Brisker might be the most day one Penn State prospect ready to contribute to the NFL in a while. He has few weaknesses and many strengths.

Hamilton and Georgia’s Lewis Cine are the most beloved at safety, but don’t count Brisker as one of the best defensemen in this draft.

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