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USA TODAY Sports’ Lorenzo Reyes looks at some of the big questions that will help shape the outcome of the 2017 NFL draft in Philadelphia.
USA TODAY Sports

As the NFL draft nears, USA TODAY Sports will release its positional rankings with one post every weekday. First up, a breakdown of the safety class …

1. Jamal Adams, LSU

6-0, 214

For clubs seeking a highly effective dual-purpose safety, he’s probably the best option in this draft. Adams is a ball magnet who will blow up screen passes, stonewall ball carriers at the line of scrimmage or break up or intercept a pass in coverage. It’s hard to miss his No. 33 streaking across the field to make a play. He’s also a willing special teams player who will gladly throw a nasty block in order to spring a returner. Finally, Adams brings a reputation as a strong leader, often an undervalued component of a safety’s responsibilities. He could be a top-five pick.

2. Malik Hooker, Ohio State

6-1, 206

Coming off a monstrous 2016 season for the Buckeyes, he’s the premier center fielder of this class. Hooker has great range and seems to move effortlessly while tracking the ball over great swatches of terrain. He picked off seven passes last season and showcased his athleticism by returning three for touchdowns. He’s not nearly as ferocious a hitter as Adams and tackling is one area where his inexperience as a one-year starter shows up. Surgeries on his hip labrum and for a sports hernia prevented him from working out at the scouting combine. But if he checks out medically, his high-end potential could make him the first safety off the board when the first round opens April 27.

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3. Jabrill Peppers, Michigan

5-11, 213

You have to admire his selflessness and fearlessness. Peppers switched from safety to linebacker in 2016 in a bid…