Summer Scouting: Isaiah Pola-Mao, S, USC

In the most recent NFL draft, the USC Trojans had a safety, Talanoa Hufanga, drafted in the fifth round, and in the upcoming draft they could have another safety, Isaiah Pola-Mao, drafted as well. However, Pola-Mao has a much better chance to be a high draft selection than Hufanga who fell to day three of the draft. Pola-Mao will likely be a day two selection with the ability to sneak into the first round if he can increase his turnover production and his tackling. Palo-Mao has the versatility to play in any alignment and can be a fit for just about any defensive scheme.

Strengths:

  • Not afraid to stick his nose into a pile
  • Versatile – Can play single-high and in the box, no limitations
  • Excellent in coverage – good instincts
  • Eyes in coverage, use of peripheral vision
  • Very active in run support
  • Clean footwork
  • Smooth/oily hips
  • Always going full speed
  • Quality reps in man coverage, playing on the LoS and in off-coverage
  • Played multiple roles in the defense with success
  • Good athlete with the requisite range to play single-high
  • Play strength
  • Evading blockers in space

Weaknesses:

  • Attempts to undercut blockers and gives ball carriers open lanes
  • Needs to improve his angles to the football
  • Not the most consistent tackler, drops his eyes
  • Slight frame
  • Turn plays on the ball into turnovers

2021 Season Statistics:

19 solo tackles, 21 assisted tackles, 40 total tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, 1 interception, and 4 pass deflections in 6 games played

Preliminary Round Grade:

6.5 – Second Round Grade

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