The Opening: Top 10 Skill (Defense)

The Opening: Top 10 Skill (Defense)

After watching The Opening for three days last week, Scout names its Top 10 Skill Performers on the defensive side of the ball...

Many made a case for this list, but only 10 could make it.

Justin Dunning - S - Whitehouse (Texas)
Dunning (Pictured above) was good from start to finish. He showed great range, excellent closing speed, and hands of a top wide receiver. Hard to believe he is coming off ACL surgery nine months ago. Dunning lit it up.

Mark Fields - CB - Cornelius (N.C.) Hough
An aggressive corner who showed he could turn and run with the top receivers in the country. There has been some chatter about his potential position being safety, but if the South Carolina Gamecocks want him at corner, he can be a good one there too.

Dechaun Holiday - CB - San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills
Great size and when you look at him, you think free safety, but after watching him at The Opening, corner is definitely a position he can play at a high level. He got his hands on many footballs last week.

Donte Jackson - CB - Jefferson (La.) Riverdale
One of the more versatile athletes at this event. Great speed and reactive quickness in coverage. He picked off passes on defense, he caught touchdowns on offense. Great burst and a prospect who will ascend up the rankings.

Jaquan Johnson - S - Miami (Fla.) Killian
Consistent is what Johnson was all week. Very physical player with great instincts. Plays with confidence and swag on the back end of the defense.

Malik Jefferson, Linebacker - Mesquite (Tex.) Poteet
Does things not many at his size can do. Can really run well at his size and he was not exposed in any way during the 7on7. He picked off passes and returned multiple interceptions for touchdowns. A special player.

Iman Marshall - CB - Long Beach (Calif.) Polytechnic
Big corner who can jam and he made it tough for receivers to get off the line. He stayed with some big and small receivers in their hip pocket showing he can turn and run as well. Ball skills stood out during the event also.

Tarvarus McFadden - CB - Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) American Heritage
Needed no help in this event. His team did not have to roll a safety over the top to help, McFadden was in lock-down mode all week. He used his length and showcased his ball skills.

Roquan Smith, Linebacker - Montezuma (Ga.) Macon County
One of the two linebackers to really separate themselves at The Opening. An athlete moving well in coverage and showing his ability to react to receivers. He had four interceptions one day and was always making plays on the ball.

Kevin Toliver - CB - Jacksonville (Fla.) Trinity Christian
Toliver did not make a ton of plays any one day this week, but he was not challenged very often. When he was thrown towards, he made a play on it. He picked off a pass in the end zone to seal the deal early in the day and batted away many passes.

Malik Jefferson Junior Highlights:
Greg Biggins, Brian Dohn, Brandon Huffman, Scott Kennedy, Jamie Newberg, Greg Powers, and Allen Trieu contributed to this feature. Recommended Stories

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