Jerrin Thompson, S
The biggest disappointment among the regular starters on defense for the Longhorns in the first half of the regular season was senior field safety Jerrin Thompson. After a solid run as the quarterback of the secondary last fall, Thompson has struggled to maintain that same consistency this season.
I don’t know whether he’s dealing with an injury or what, but Thompson has looked slow to close and stay with his assignments in pass coverage in the intermediate and deep passing game this season.
Thompson got beat over the top on a few occasions in the first half of the regular season, most notably in a play that resulted in a long score for Alabama in Texas’ Week 2 win in Tuscaloosa.
Another blemish on Thompson’s record this season was the miscommunication with senior linebacker David Gbenda, resulting in the game-winning touchdown for quarterback Dillon Gabriel and the Sooners. Thompson and Gbenda didn’t properly communicate the motion guy pre-snap, resulting in the Longhorns losing the receiver in coverage before Gabriel found him in the end zone for the game-winning score.
Last but not least, Thompson is missing more tackles this season than he did the previous three years at Texas. Thompson has missed eight tackles on just 21 tackle attempts this season, resulting in the worst missed tackle rate in the Big 12 among starting safeties (north of 38 percent).
Thompson has plenty of mistakes to clean up in the second half of the regular season, namely, showing more consistency in pass coverage and better tackling fundamentals.