Every player at the Combine looks for a way to separate himself from the rest of the class. There are a few players in this year’s safety class vying for one of the top spots on a team’s draft board under the position marked for safeties. One of them is Florida State’s Terrence Brooks. As a leader of last season’s national championship defense, Brooks is ready to step into high-pressure situations regularly in the NFL.
The 5-foot-11, 198-pound free safety believes NFL game days won’t be too different from the national championship game, when he recorded six tackles, one tackle for loss and a pass deflection .
“I’m pretty sure it’ll be really close,” Brooks said Sunday from the NFL Combine. “Every game in the NFL is like a championship game, that’s how they play it. Being able to get that experience at the national championship was definitely good for me.”
The FSU defense in 2013 was the top pass D in the country and they also led the nation in scoring defense and interceptions–Brooks had two of them and was considered a leader of the squad.
He’s a safety built like a cornerback, but Brooks said it’s not how big you are, but how big you play. Still, he gets the dreaded “undersized” label from many scouts. NFL Network’s Mike Mayock, in a press conference held Sunday night from the Combine, said Brooks is around the fifth-best safety in this year’s class. Brooks feels his time as a leader of a big-time defense and his tough play, in addition to his cover skills, make him one of the top safety choices this year.
“I’m able to stay on the field with my cover skills whether it’s man-to-man or up high,” Brooks said. “I’m physical too. I can go down in the box and handle things down there too.”
What may make scouts most excited about Brooks is his speed. He ran an unofficial 4.41 40 on Tuesday, the fastest time in the first group of safeties to work out.