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Willie Pile

SELECTED BY TAMPA BAY , ROUND 7, PICK 51, OVERALL PICK 252
DB | (6-2, 206, 4.6) | Virginia Tech
By Pro Football Weekly

Notes: Redshirted in 1998. Was on the second unit in '99 when he suffered a season-ending neck injury midway through the season. Started every game in 2000 and '01 at free safety and led the team in interceptions both years. Had 12 tackles in 1999; 56 stops, 10 passes broken up and six picks in '00; and 94-6-4 in '01. Had left shoulder surgery in January of '01. Started all 13 games in '02 and had 106-5-4. Returned one pick 96 yards for a touchdown. Also forced two fumbles. Named second-team all-conference.

Positives: Big and thick with good size and speed. Smart and aware in zone coverage. Good reacting to the ball, using his hands and making interceptions. Agressive supporting the run. Fine character and leader. Takes good angles and has good ball skills. Quick to react to run or pass. Good long range for 2-deep. Durable. Started every game the last three years.

Negatives: Not a man cover guy. Average athletic ability. Lacks hips to turn quickly and catch up. Is reluctant at times vs. the run. Questionable change of direction. Not smooth. Loses a step changing directions. Has had recurring shoulder injuries. Struggles backpedaling and turning. Hesitates vs. the run. Jump-on-the-pile guy. Lacks acceleration, range and play speed. Limited flexibility in hips and lower body. Can be turned and burned if he has to play man. Average hitter and tackler for a safety and will miss some open-field tackles.

Summary: More of a zone safety than man-on-man cover player who looks the part, but is not a consistent hitter or tackler and struggles to turn his hips.

* Player biographies are provided by Pro Football Weekly.