College: Notre Dame
Draft: 5th round in 2012, selected 139th overall by Minnesota
Games Studied: 2016, with Buffalo Bills, vs. Arizona, Miami, New England (twice)
Report:Blanton was a cornerback at Notre Dame, but he converted to safety when he came into the league with the Vikings. He was a rotational player for the Buffalo Bills in 2016. He mainly played in sub packages as a deep safety.
This is a player who is competitive in the way he goes about his job. He does not shy away from contact one bit, and he works to be around the ball and in on the tackle. That said, there are limitations – he doesn't have much overall playing speed or quickness. His reactions help him get in position more than his athletic ability. For that reason, he is better when he deals with plays in front of him than behind.
All of that said, he is not afraid to jump a route while he reads the quarterback. He will take a chance if he sees a crossing route. But he is not out of control or out of position in the way he plays. You can see the traits of a former cornerback with his pedal, along with his ability to turn in movement. He doesn't look uncomfortable in the way he moves. He's not an explosive player out of his breaks and that's because he lacks that quickness.
This is a disciplined player. He's poised and you don't see him fooled or out of position. He knows his assignments and plays them. He can be hit/miss as a tackler. There are snaps where he gets his man on the ground and then others where he slides off to the side. But it's important to note that he doesn't have those terrible misses in space.
Blanton is not going to wow you with the physical side of his game. His signing would not prevent me from drafting a safety next week.