Updated Jan. 3, 2019
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
At the start of the 2018 season, one of the breakout players was Alabama safety Deionte Thompson. He had an excellent opener against Louisville and followed that up with another impressive showing taking on Ole Miss and its trio of future NFL receivers. Team sources thought that Thompson had first-round potential after his hot start to the year, but over the course of the season, Thompson's play cooled down and so did the feelings of NFL evaluators. In speaking to multiple team sources, they ended up grading Thompson on the second day of the 2019 NFL Draft.
There were a few reasons why Thompson saw his stock go down. The first one was teams felt he stopped making plays on the ball. A second issue was missed tackles, and thirdly, he has a thin frame for the NFL. Some team sources felt that younger safeties Xavier McKinney and Shyheim Carter were more impressive in the back half half of the season.
Team evaluators say they hear it is 50/50 on if Thompson declares for the 2019 NFL Draft. Alabama is trying to keep him and convince him to return for his senior year, but that could be challenging given the younger players who could take playing time away from Thompson. He has a tough decision to make, as he could be a second-day pick in April and it might be difficult to improve on that as a senior.