In 2016, the New York Jets will look for safety Calvin Pryor to continue to develop and become the player they know he could be. Consistency is what it’s all about based on what transpired last season.
In 2015, free safety Calvin Pryor finally had a breakout season in his young career playing up to his potential. He had a total of 50 tackles, one forced fumble, two interceptions, and six passes deflected. He was able to lay some big hits against his opponents and his nickname was rightly justified. At Louisville and in the NFL so far, Pryor is the “Louisville Slugger” because of the type of heavy hitting he’s capable of doing. He has a ton of potential that would allow him to play in this league for a very long time.
The New York Jets are hoping this season he will be able to produce like he did last season or even have a better year this time around. He has plenty of depth in covering the field that he could adjust himself in defending the deep ball. If things go wrong on certain plays Pryor is one person the Jets could rely on in making the stop. He has plenty of explosiveness and ball skills to quickly become one of the most feared defensive backs in the game.
Pryor needs to work on being less physical because of the heavy hitters in the league being penalized a lot more.
He is a bit tight when he has to change the direction of his opponents as this allows receivers some space. Especially in situations with passing players that have receivers do double moves off the line of scrimmage. If he is able to fix the weaknesses in his game than he has the potential to become Defensive Player of the Year if he can be as consistent as last season.
This season, Pryor will be relied upon heavily against a tough slate of opponents. The Jets will be facing mostly NFL Playoff teams of last year in the first six weeks of the regular season. The defense he is a part of has the potential to be something special which could make history in the NFL if everything comes together.
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After looking into the history of safety’s in the league, Pryor can be compared to legendary free safety Jack Tatum of the Oakland Raiders.
Tatum was nicknamed “The Assassin” as played in the league from 1971-1979.
Tatum was a very aggressive player who laid down the big hit and similar to Pryor, is all about keeping his opponents at bay and scared to come anywhere his way with the football.
Of course, Pryor has a long way to go if he’s to reach major success like Tatum did over his career, but it’s all about consistency in the grand scheme of things.
Overall, this season Pryor has a lot of pressure on him and he will need to live up to his potential because this year is very crucial when it comes to his progression. He needs to continue to build on last year’s success and push himself even further. Pryor has the potential to be one of the best safety’s to ever play this game if he continues to improve year in, year out.