Having addressed the offensive line in the first round, the Bucs have added Antoine Winfield Jr in the second round. At 5’10” and 195 pounds, the son of a former Bills, Vikings, and Seahawks cornerback, has been raised to be ready for this opportunity.
While he’s a little on the small size for a traditional safety, his short burst speed and quickness allow him to make a lot of plays on the ball. With seven interceptions and 58 solo tackles in 2019 alone, Winfield has developed quite the football brain.
His size has impacted his tackling to a degree, but his technique is excellent. He’s a real hunter when it comes to the ball, and suits the more modern role a safety has to perform, and while not fast as such could easily be dropped into a slot corner role at times.
Antoine Winfield will make a lot of plays
His instincts and off the chart competitiveness mean Winfield is not only a lot of fun to watch, he’s also a great teammate. His feet are smooth and fluid, and he has effective cadence that always leaves him well balanced. He’s not the most flexible and can have some issues flipping his hips.
Walter Football had this to say on Antoine Winfield: “Winfield was a ballhawk for the Gophers in 2019, totaling seven interceptions while also contributing 85 tackles, three sacks and a pass broken up. He showed some solid instincts with a knack for big plays, and also contributed on special teams. Winfield helped himself with a fast 40 at the combine, but has some serious size and length limitations for the NFL.”
Antoine Winfield lacks the long-range pace to make him an elite next-level FS, but he will make a great strong safety, box safety, or nickel corner. His versatility likely sees him get reps at all three, and it’s likely that he will see considerable action from day one.
His football IQ is brilliant and couple with great instincts his ability to breakdown plays and read and react to what’s in front of him always sees him around the ball. He is a dynamic play-maker and blitzer and will also contribute on special teams.