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Markquese Bell Is a Day 3 Option at Safety with Upside

Grambling State v Florida A&M Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

Markquese Bell, S

School: Florida A&M | Conference: SWAC

College Experience: Senior | Age: ?

Height / Weight: 6’2” / 212 lbs

Projected Draft Status: 5th – 7th round

Player Comparison: Rayshawn Jenkins

College Statistics

(Source: www.footballdb.com)

Player Overview

New Jersey product Markquese Bell was a two-way player at wide receiver and safety in high school. He would eventually become the third best player in the state and a four-star recruit that chose Maryland over Michigan and Ohio State. A violation of team rules saw him expelled from the program before he could play a down. A year of JUCO play earned him offers from Nebraska and South Carolina to play in the FBS, but Bell chose Florida A&M.

In 2019, he established himself as one of the best safeties in the MEAC making 61 tackles, five tackles for loss, nine pass breakups and five interceptions. The Rattlers canceled their 2020 season and switched to the SWAC. In 2021, Bell picked up where he left off with 95 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles, and one interception.

Strengths

  • Uses speed to beat blockers to spot in run support
  • Sure tackler with good striking power
  • Uses length to breakup passes; 10 PBUs in two years
  • Effective in both zone and man coverage schemes

Weaknesses

  • l would like him to recognize plays more quickly
  • Can let receivers get past him focusing on action in backfield
  • Looks to lay big hit a little too often
  • Can be fooled by misdirection and play action

Let’s see his work

How He Fits On The Team

Markquese Bell has snaked his way to becoming an NFL prospect. Despite the twist and turns, there’s never been a question whether Bell has the talent. He is long, athletic, and quick to the ball. He played closer to the line of scrimmage his senior year, but can drop into coverage and play well there. His junior year, he played more deep safety and he might be able to do that at the next level. He needs time to improve his reading and reacting to plays and improve his discipline in coverage.

The Commanders have been looking closely at the safety position, inviting a number of top prospects at the position in for private visit. It seems like they are focused on bringing in a versatile player that can handle multiple roles at the position. If the team is unable to find that player early in the draft, Bell should be on the Commanders radar. He might not start, but he should be able to provide depth behind Kam Curl as they have similar play styles. The team would likely consider him a candidate to fill the buffalo nickel position. Until he is ready for a role on the defense, he projects to be a good special teams player.