Card: Leaf 2014
Acquired: 2018, Walmart Autographed Memorabilia
Calvin Pryor III played college ball at Louisville. A starter as a true Freshman, Pryor started laying down the wood for the Cardinals in 2011 with 43 total tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 2 interceptions, 5 pass deflections, and 2 forced fumbles playing the majority of his snaps at free safety. He continued his wrecking ways in 2012, posting a solid 100 total tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, a sack, and 2 interceptions. In his final year at Louisville (2013), Calvin finished with 72 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 3 interceptions, and 4 passes defended. A physical player, Pryor amazingly knocked a player out in 3 consecutive games. There was a lot of buzz surrounding Calvin entering the 2014 NFL Draft, and scouts loved his set skills, instincts, and physicality- all things you’d ask for in a free safety roaming the line of scrimmage. He ended up going #18 overall to the New York Jets.
Well Pryor had a rough rookie season to say the least. He hd some bright spots, but he missed 15 total tackles on the year. In 11 starts Calvin clocked 60 combined tackles, 2 pass defended, and .5 sacks. It was a rough trial by fire to say the least. 2015 proved to be his best season on record. Moved around the field and playing both safety positions, Pryor finished with 69 total tackles, 2 interceptions, 6 pass deflections, and a forced fumble. He’d be moved out to strong safety for the 2016 season, and regressed. Considered a liability in coverage, Calvin had 6 pass deflections, a forced fumble, and 60 total tackles. After a tumultuous offseason, Calvin was traded to the Cleveland Browns in 2017, but soon thereafter be released by the franchise for fighting with a teammate. He was subsequently picked up by the Jacksonville Jaguars, but released before the end of the season, suiting up for just 2 games. The Texans kicked the tires on Calvin at the end of 2017 but opted not to sign him.
Currently Calvin is a free agent. I think he’s still got the skills to ball. A lot of good in the box safeties seem to go through this pariah stage of their career, but at some point find a home that really suits their unique skillset. Case in point Bonecrusher Bernard Pollard or DJ Swearinger. Both of these guys were great playmakers, who just needed to be put in systems that really showcased their abilities at or close to the line of scrimmage. As Calvin is still young, there’s still hope for him left, and if the NFL isn’t where it is at, I think he’d make a fine addition to the Alliance of American Football.