J.L. Skinner is a 6’4”, 209-pound safety out of Boise State who is joining the Denver Broncos in the sixth round of the 2023 NFL Draft. The Athletic’s draft analyst Dane Brugler had Skinner ranked as his sixth-best safety in the draft and his 92nd overall player in the draft while having a 3rd to 4th round grade on him.
A three-year starter at Boise State, Skinner was the boundary safety in defensive coordinator Spencer Danielson’s 4-2-5 base scheme. With his hybrid skill set, he would often line up in the box while also showing his range in the post and seeing snaps in the slot. Skinner is a long-striding athlete with cover range versus both the run and pass because of his unique size (not many safeties have an identical body type to AJ Green). His eyes and coverage angles need to be more disciplined, but he doesn’t waste the interception opportunities created by his large catch radius. Overall, Skinner needs to improve his anticipation and tighten up his take-on and tackling, but he is a glider with the physical toughness to play in the box and range to cover tight ends. He fits best as a nickel safety or low-hole player with the upside of an NFL starter.
Now, he will join a Broncos secondary and add depth at the safety position behind All-Pro safety Justin Simmons. He will compete with Caden Sterns, P.J. Locke, Delarrin Turner-Yell, and others for snaps.
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