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Rashean Mathis

SELECTED BY JACKSONVILLE , ROUND 2, PICK 7, OVERALL PICK 39
DB | (6-0, 202, 4.41) | Bethune-Cookman
By Pro Football Weekly

Notes: Started nine times at cornerback as a true freshman in 1999 and had 44 tackles, eight passes broken up and two interceptions. All-Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference free safety in 2000, when he took part in 44 stops, broke up eight passes and picked off 11 passes. Also returned nine punts for 108 yards. Won All-MEAC honors again in '01, when he recorded 44-7-4 and returned punts 24-387 and two touchdowns while playing cornerback. Moved back inside in '02 so teams could not avoid him and picked off a Division I-AA-leading 14 passes, which he returned for 455 yards and three touchdowns (including a coast-to-coast 100-yard return) -- all I-AA records. Also broke up 19 passes, took part in 61 tackles and returned 22 punts for 145 yards. Won MEAC Defensive Player of the Year honors and the Buck Buchanan Trophy as the top defensive player in Division I-AA.

Positives: A really good athlete with fine size and speed. Smooth and fluid for a six-foot-plus defensive back and can turn his hips, change direction and close on the ball. Has fine ball skills and good hands and is very productive in terms of getting interceptions and returning them. Can return punts. Has the size and speed you look for in a corner and enough suddenness and turning ability to play outside. As a safety, has great range, and in two years at the position, picked off 25 passes. Has good hands and run vision. Very strong upper body. Has 381-inch vertical.

Negatives: Has not faced that many top receivers in college. Inconsistent hitter and tackler who takes some poor angles to the ball at times. Footwork and technique will get him in trouble at times as a corner. Is not a pure corner or a pure safety. Will not always play the ball well and has some trouble with passes over his head.

Summary: A good prospect with great workout numbers who needs to improve his tackling and aggressiveness if he wants to play inside, and his footwork and technique if he plays at cornerback. Has a chance to be a very good player but also could be just a guy, depending upon how well he corrects his weaknesses.

* Player biographies are provided by Pro Football Weekly.