Mon, 13 Jul 2020

UDFA Profile: Small-School Safety Displays Range

Dallas Cowboys
30 May 2020, 04:24 GMT+10

Over the next two weeks, Dallascowboys.com dives deeper into the talented group of undrafted rookies that will battle for a roster spot this offseason.

Name: Luther Kirk Position: Safety School: Illinois State Height/Weight: 6-2/195lbs Awards & Recognition: East-West Shrine Game Defensive MVP, First Team FCS All-American, Missouri Valley Conference First-Team

The Good: This dude has some range! Sideline-to-sideline, pressure, it doesn't matter...Kirk flashes his speed and length in the secondary. A great build for a safety with an impressive wingspan (73¾ inches) that he uses to efficiently close on defenders and finish the play. Had the ability to take away the best receiver he faced each week and was known to make the big play at the right time. With a game sealing interception against Western Illinois in 2018, a 10-tackle game against Top 10 ranked Northern Iowa, or a couple big pass breakups against Northern Illinois, Kirk seemed to find a way to get the job done.

The Project: He still has a long way to go as a run defender when brought into the box. Oversells on the attack and can easily lose sight of the ball carrier leading to big gains on misdirection handoffs. Also, it's concerning to see where his production from 5 interceptions in 2018 dropped to zero this past season against the same competition in the FCS. Whether that's because of different responsibilities in the secondary or just lack off opportunity, it took until his postseason game to finally get a pick.

The Summary: As it has been heavily reported over this entire offseason, the Cowboys' secondary has filled some holes but can never be too overconfident with what they have at safety. Leading into his week at the East-West Shrine Game, there were murmurs that Kirk could jump into the mid-round conversation with a strong performance. What he did, in the face of pressure, was intercept a pass and make two solid tackles that was enough to name him the Defensive MVP of the event. It was unfortunate for Kirk that he went undrafted, but this could not have been a better post-draft signing for Dallas. His flexibility to play any position in the secondary increases his chances of making the team, even though it would most likely be on special teams to start. But bringing a Garland native back home to reach his full potential with little-to-no risk is a huge win.

Check out the full rookie class*HERE*.

More St Louis News

Access More

Sign up for St Louis News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!