What the Vikings can expect from new safety Lewis Cine in 2022

(Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) Lewis Cine
(Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) Lewis Cine /
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Minnesota Vikings
Lewis Cine (Photo by Adam Hagy/Getty Images) /

The Bad

Ball skills

For all that Lewis Cine does well in the secondary, he does not flash a ton of ball skills. He is not going to be an interception machine or dominant defender in the passing game, though he will be solid in that area regardless.

Kyle Hamilton and Daxton Hill were better pass defenders and went higher than Cine for that reason. He is going to make his money in the run game and as an enforcer rather than as a true coverage safety, but that’s okay.

Playing top to bottom

Cine does his damage as a downhill defender that is going to decimate opponents who dare to enter his zone. That is going to add a meanness to the Vikings’ secondary, but it does take away from Cine as a true safety.

He is going to have some struggles when the ball is behind him and he is playing away from the line of scrimmage. Taking him away from the enforcer role will help his development, but there will be a learning curve as a deep safety in the NFL that is asked to protect against the pass.

Coverage in general

This is going to scare some fans, but I promise it is not as bad as it appears. Most of Lewis Cine’s issues come as a coverage defender when he is asked to do too much. He gets caught flat-footed and misses some angles as a result.

Fortunately, he offers excellent recovery speed and a fierce demeanor when it comes to tackling that will help make up for some of those angles. He reads routes well, which helps him as a defender, but he needs to polish his coverage tendencies as a rookie. There will be some frustrating moments, but he can improve as he takes reps.