Saturday, April 4, 2009

Player Profile: Derek Pegues Mississippi St. S

Pros: Pegues shows good quickness and awareness on the field. He is a good centerfielder that reads the play before it develops. He has good hands and excellent ball skills—a true playmaker. Pegues is a versatile player that started at corner during his sophomore season before moving to free safety as an upper classman. He was also a good kick and punt returner with good vision and moves in the open field. Pegues has an excellent understanding of the game.

Cons: Pegues is a bit short and is not very strong. He is not a very physical player and struggles to tackle in the open field. He does not take good angles on runs. Scouts are not sure if he should be a corner or safety at the next level. Pegues is views by some as a ‘tweener—to small for safety, but not fast enough to play cornerback. If moved to corner, he will need to play in zone due to his inability to run with receivers. Despite being electric on punts, it is a question every time if he will catch it cleanly, and he often makes bad decisions while trying to field them. He had multiple off-the-field issues at Mississippi State, which will certainly bring up a red flag and prompt teams to further investigate.

Scouts Take: Pegues has made bad choices on and off the field. He needs to stop relying on his ability and become more aggressive at the next level, especially if he stays at safety, which he should. He does have the ability to make people miss when returning kicks but needs to learn to catch the kick more cleanly or there is no way an NFL coach will trust him to handle return duties. Bottom line—Pegues is a good football player that offers athletic ability and good instincts, but he will not be able to contribute unless he becomes more physical and discipline.

Photo Credit: SEC Sports Media