Breakdowns

Top 30 Cornerback Prospects for the 2021 NFL Draft

Last month, we gave you the top 10 cornerback prospects heading into the 2021 NFL Draft. With just about one month left before the draft, let’s expand on that list. Here are the top 30 CB prospects:

 

1. Patrick Surtain II, Alabama, 6-1, 203

National champion born to a 3-time Pro Bowl CB, Surtain was the consensus top CB out of high school before being named a Freshman All-American (2018) and later unanimous first-team All-American and SEC Defensive Player of the Year (2020). Starting outside CB you can win with in a base Cover 2 scheme that frequently gives him press responsibilities with safety help for fast receivers. All-around technician and instinctive marvel who can just as easily pin a WR to the sideline as stack and shed an outside blocker to make a tackle. Smart enough to play highly disguised schemes. Day 1 starter with NFL bloodlines and no injury history… Limited most by his lack of top-end speed and adequate explosiveness, he’ll struggle on Go and Crossing routes if he’s isolated. Under DC Pete Golding (second year) and CB coach Karl Scott (third year) in a pre-snap Cover 2 that commonly shifted post-snap, player was an outside LCB who traveled across to play zone against some three WR sets. Most frequently in press, he was asked to jam, wall and man cover on WRs and TEs as well as flat, deep half, third and quarter zones.

● Best Game – Mississippi State (10/31/20)

● Worst Game – Tennessee (10/24/20)

● Best Trait – Polish/Technique

● Key Stats – Allowed 42.3% completion (2020) (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 38/41

● Pro Comparison – Marcus Peters

 

2. Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech, 6-2, 197

Played QB in high school and WR as a freshman before a training camp non-contact tear in his right ACL cost him his entire freshman season. He returned as a new starter at RCB his sophomore season before opting out of the 2020 season. Starting Outside CB you can win with in a scheme that lets him play off and use his burst to drive on intermediate to underneath routes. Very patient cover corner who excels downfield and driving on the catch point, using his length, balance and ball skills to take away receivers and some TEs… Struggles in press, with some hip stiffness and isn’t physical throughout routes. Has the desire against run, but needs to get smarter as well as improve his tackling. In 2019, under DC Bud Foster (25th season) and CBs coach Brian Mitchell (fourth season), player was strictly an outside LCB who was frequently isolated defensively and responsible for man, boundary, deep third or quarter and flat zone, with some TE assignments.

● Best Game – Miami-Fla. (10/05/2019)

● Worst Game – Notre Dame (11/02/2019)

● Best Trait – Athleticism/Length

● Key Stats – 33% completion allowed (2019) (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 23/24

● Pro Comparison – Xavier Rhodes

 
 

3. Jaycee Horn, South Carolina, 6-1, 205

Son of a four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver who was a 4-star recruit and made the SEC all-freshman team in his first season in Columbia. Starting Outside CB you can win with when mentally engaged in a Cover 1 or 2 scheme that gives him intermediate to underneath responsibilities. Highly instinctive, aggressive corner with the fluidity and physicality to be sticky in man, then the length and ball skills to disrupt the pass. Can matchup against TEs and taller WRs in the passing game… Competitiveness and mental toughness are major question marks due to tendency to take plays off. Under DC and DB coach Travaris Robinson (fifth season), player was an outside CB who traveled across the formation, including some slot and Cover 2 safety reps. He was frequently isolated defensively and responsible for man, deep third or quarter, and curl/flat zone, with some deep half or TE assignments.

● Best Game – Auburn (10/17/2020)

● Worst Game – Ole Miss (11/14/2020)

● Best Trait – Coverage Processing

● Key Stats – 23 PBUs in 30 games

● Starts/Games – 29/30

● Pro Comparison – Prince Amukamara

 
 

4. Kelvin Joseph, Kentucky, 6-1, 192

Redshirt sophomore who has started 9 of 20 career games, including all of the first 9 in 2020 before opting out of the final two games in a fourth-team all-SEC season. Four-star HS prospect. As a true freshman in 2018, played in 11 games for LSU before being injured and subsequently suspended, missing their final two games. Left the team and sat out 2019 due to transfer rules. Other undisclosed off-field concerns. Starting outside CB you can win with independent of scheme. Well-balanced corner who brings a lot of desirable skills to the table, including above-average athleticism, physicality, processing, and ball skills. Has potential at FS due to range… He will be his own biggest enemy, needing to settle his off-the-field issues and preventing avoidable after-the-whistle penalties. Under DC Brad White (second season) and DB coach Steve Clinkscale (fifth season), player is primarily a traveling outside CB in a base Cover 2 with frequent variations. Lining up in press and off, with some snaps from the slot and at FS, player is responsible for man, including on bigger WRs and TEs, curl/flat zone, deep third, deep half and single-high.

● Best Game – Tennessee (10/17/2020)

● Worst Game – Ole Miss (10/03/2020)

● Best Trait – Ball Skills

● Key Stats – 4 INTs (2020)

● Starts/Games – 9/20

● Pro Comparison – Shaq Griffin

 
 

5. Tyson Campbell, Georgia, 6-2, 185

Former 5-star recruit (#2 DB) and HS state track champion in 100M (10.39) and 200M (20.8). Starting outside CB you can win with in a Cover 2 scheme that lets him jam and play underneath without frequent concern of deep routes. Long corner with the play strength and ability to use his length to stay in phase, then get across to disrupt the ball. Has the all-around game to succeed in Year 1… Relies on physicality in route, getting stacked on deep routes by faster receivers due to adequate foot speed and giving up separation underneath to shiftier receivers who can keep clear of his hands. Under DC Dan Lanning (second season), player was an outside CB who most frequently lined up in press, though also with significant off experience. He was responsible for man, boundary, deep third or quarter, or flat zone, with occasional TE assignments.

● Best Game – South Carolina (11/28/2020)

● Worst Game – Alabama (10/17/2020)

● Best Trait – Size/Length

● Key Stats – 10 PBUs in 33 games

● Starts/Games – 24/33

● Pro Comparison – Akhello Witherspoon

 

6. Eric Stokes, Georgia, 6-1, 185

Earned 2020 first-team All-America and first-team All-SEC to follow on his 2019 second-team All-SEC. Rotational outside CB you can win with from off in either man or zone. High-potential corner who has the size, burst and COD to become a Pro Bowl-caliber shutdown CB in man. Will be dependent on coaching to correct his footwork and speed up his mental processes. Poor competitiveness that will turn off some teams and could require stronger run defenders around him. Under DC Dan Lanning (second season), player was an outside CB who most frequently lined up in Press on either side against taller WRs, though also with significant experience in off. He was responsible for man, wall or a deep third or quarter, with infrequent blitzes or flat zones.

● Best Game – Tennessee (10/10/2020)

● Worst Game – Alabama (10/17/2020)

● Best Trait – Athleticism

● Key Stats – 2 INT TDs (2020)

● Starts/Games – 26/36

● Pro Comparison – Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie

 

7. Elijah Molden, Washington, 5-10, 191

Started every game for the past two seasons. 2020 second-team All-America and Pac-12 Player of the Year to follow on 2019 first-team Pac-12, 2019 second-team All-America, and 2018 second-team Pac-12 nods. Father was 8-year NFL CB, named 2008 member of Oregon HOF, and brother was D1 defensive lineman. 4-star recruit from high school. Starting slot CB you can win with in underneath to intermediate areas. Highly competitive corner who excels reading from zone and using instincts and burst to make plays. Fearless against run or on special teams, always moving to make plays… Smaller corner without top-end speed that is consistently beaten down field and will get displaced from head-on contact. Lacks length or explosiveness to make plays on ball in the air. Under HC Jimmy Lake (first season in role, seventh with program) and DB coach Will Harris (first season in role, fourth with program) in a base Cover 2, player is a chess piece that most frequently lines up in the slot from off, but also plays significant snaps at safety or in press. Responsibilities include man coverage of TEs and WRs, hook/curl and curl/flat zones, and deep half or single high.

 

● Best Game – Arizona (11/21/2020)

● Worst Game – Stanford (12/05/2020)

● Best Trait – Toughness/Hustle

● Key Stats – 17 PBUs (2019)

● Starts/Games – 19/44

● Pro Comparison – Slower Jason Verrett

 

8. Greg Newsome II, Northwestern, 6-1, 190

Junior who has started 18 of only 21 career games. Has only participated in seven wins due to repeated injuries, including five in 2020, despite team posting 19-16 record over his tenure. Starting outside CB you can win with in a Cover 3 or Cover 2 zone scheme that protects him over the top with off responsibilities against faster receivers. Highly intelligent corner who would excel when paired with a strong pass rush, using COD and mental processing to win on quick-hitting underneath routes… Has had significant injuries each collegiate season. Dependent on scheme to avoid longer-developing man matchups where his adequate foot speed allows separation. Under DC Mike Hankwitz (13th season) and DBs coach Matt MacPherson (third season) in a base Cover 3, player was an outside CB who played both press and off in man, deep third or quarter, and flat zone.

● Best Game – Wisconsin (11/21/2020)

● Worst Game – Nebraska (11/07/2020)

● Best Trait – Zone Processing

● Key Stats – 22 PBUs in 20 games

● Starts/Games – 18/21

● Pro Comparison – Kyle Fuller

 

9. Ifeatu Melifonwu, 6-2, 212

Second-team All-ACC nod in 2020. Brother is NFL DB and high draft pick. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a single-high scheme that lets him play off man and use ball skills to disrupt. Long corner who could be a very productive starter with some technical refinement due to size, burst and ball skills. One of the strongest CBs in the draft with an aggressive nature… Hip bender with choppy backpedal and hitch in plant. Loses focus in Zone and doesn’t use consistent tackling techniques. Under DC Tony White (first season) and CBs coach Chip West (first season), player was an outside CB, lining up in press and off. Responsibilities included man, deep third, curl/flat zone, and deep half, with occasional snaps as a single-high FS or as a box S.

● Best Game – Clemson (10/24/2020)

● Worst Game – Duke (10/10/2020)

● Best Trait – Size/Strength

● Key Stats – 5 career TFLs; 26 PBUs in 29 games

● Starts/Games – 19/29

● Pro Comparison – Jimmy Smith

 

10. D.J. Daniel, Georgia, 5-11, 183

Two-year JUCO product who has started 11 of 22 games at the FBS level, including 0 starts of 8 games in 2020. Started the last 11 games of the 2019 season. Out of HS, spent two seasons at Georgia Military College, where he was a captain and named a four-star JUCO prospect and #4 nationally. Opted out of the 2020 Peach Bowl. Senior Bowl participant, measured at 33-inch arms. Starting Slot CB you can win with in a scheme that protects him deep and gives him underneath to intermediate responsibilities on average-sized or smaller WRs, with some flexibility to play outside. Quick-twitch corner who has intriguing length, agility and COD to make a transition to the slot… Light build might not hold up at NFL level, and doesn’t seem fully in control of his length yet, showing up in punch and ball skills. Doesn’t fully trust his reads and lacks top-end speed to recover downfield. Under DC Dan Lanning (second season), player was a rotational outside CB behind two likely high-round draft picks. Responsibilities included man from press and off, including frequent assignments against big WRs and TEs, curl/flat, and deep third.

● Best Game – Arkansas (09/26/2020)

● Worst Game – Tennessee (10/10/2020)

● Best Trait – Length

● Key Stats – Allowed 42.8% completion (Georgia, PFF), 5 blocked kicks (JUCO)

● Starts/Games – 11/22 (FBS)

● Pro Comparison – Taller Captain Munnerlyn

 

11. Paulson Adebo, Stanford, 6-1, 190

Four-star high school recruit who also competes in short-distance track at the collegiate level. Named to All-Pac-12 first team in both seasons and led nation in 2018 for passes defended. Suffered a late-season injury in 2019 and opted out of the 2020 season. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a base zone scheme that allows him to face the ball, then drive down to make plays. Promising corner who flashes the burst, instincts and effort to make highlight interceptions and backfield tackles at the position… Struggles to stay mentally in-sync with receiver in Man, a step slow to turn and run and liable to bite on jabs. Out-of-control through tackles, easily beaten by agile ballcarriers. Under DC Lance Anderson (13th season in 2019) and DBs coach Duane Akina (sixth season in 2019), player is used as an outside CB with some slot assignments. From both press and off, player is asked to Man cover taller WRs and cover curl/flat and deep-third zones.

● Best Game – Northwestern (08/31/2019)

● Worst Game – UCF (09/14/2019)

● Best Trait – Burst

● Key Stats – 8 INTs (2018 & 2019)

● Starts/Games – 21/22

● Pro Comparison – Byron Jones

 

12. Thomas Graham Jr, Oregon, 5-10, 193

Senior with 39 consecutive starts before opting out of the 2020 season. Four-star HS recruit. Entered 2020 as FBS active leader in PDs after 2019 and 2018 second-team All-Pac-12 selections. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational versatile CB you can win with in a Cover 2 scheme that primarily uses zone coverage. Big-game corner who can make plays behind the LOS with burst and capably manage his zone. Dominates at the catch point with ball skills… Smaller than the NFL standard and lacks play strength or COD to win at the LOS or at the top of routes. Misses a lot of tackles due to technique and strength. Under first-year DC Andy Avalos and CBs coach Donte Williams (second season), player was an outside CB who lined up in both press and off on both sides of the formation but didn’t follow specific receivers in a base Cover 2. His responsibilities included Man, curl/flat zone, and occasional deep third.

● Best Game – Wisconsin (01/01/2020)

● Worst Game – Washington St (10/26/2019)

● Best Trait – Ball Skills

● Key Stats – 8 career INTs, 40 PBUs in 40 games

● Starts/Games – 39/40

● Pro Comparison – Tracy Porter-lite

 

13. Rodarius Williams, Oklahoma State, 6-0, 193

Redshirt senior who had started a school-record 48 consecutive games since the beginning of his redshirt freshman season. Brother is 2019 second-round pick at CB. Senior Bowl participant. Starting outside CB you can win with in a base-man scheme with matchup potential against TEs and bigger receivers. Highly-fluid corner who can recover from missteps with above-average athleticism and lock back in against most receivers and TEs… Unrefined footwork that better route runners will exploit, especially when changing directions. Not competitive against Run and can actively avoid tackles. Under DC Jim Knowles (second season) and CBs coach Tim Duffie (eighth season), player lines up in both press and off as a traveling outside CB in a base Cover 3 scheme. Responsibilities include man on WRs and TEs, deep third, curl/flat zone, and occasional deep half.

● Best Game – West Virginia (09/26/2020)

● Worst Game – Iowa State (10/24/2020)

● Best Trait – Fluidity

● Key Stats – 40.7% completion allowed (2020) (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 48/52

● Pro Comparison – Darius Slay

 

14. Keith Taylor Jr., Washington, 6-2, 191

Four-star recruit and sprinter in HS, running 100M in 10.89. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a man-heavy scheme. Technical player in coverage with desirable size. Can be a strong role player from the beginning of his career, using length and patience to consistently stay in-phase… Faster than quick, struggling to stay in control when technique is off and lacking quick-twitch fibers to create turnovers or backfield stops. Struggles against stronger receivers and needs to improve tackling technique. Under HC Jimmy Lake (first season in role, seventh with program) and DBs coach Will Harris (first season in role, fourth with program) in a multiple defense, player lines up as outside CB and is tasked with man, curl/flat zone, and deep-third, with occasional matchups against TEs.

● Best Game – Oregon State (11/14/2020)

● Worst Game – Utah (11/28/2020)

● Best Trait – Technique

● Key Stats – 59 tackles (2019)

● Starts/Games – 19/43

● Pro Comparison – Josh Jackson w/o INTs

 

15. Israel Mukuamu, South Carolina, 6-3, 205

Started five games in 2020 before opting out of the season when the HC was fired. 4-star HS recruit who was named to 2019 second-team All-SEC. Rotational versatile CB you can win with in frequent press or outside Cover 3. Lengthy corner with the pre-snap intelligence and play strength to compete at the LOS and on jump balls… Lacks consistent technique with hands and lets body get out-of-sync, especially at top of route from off. Lacks physical toughness and hustle against run. Under DC and DBs coach Travaris Robinson (fifth season), player was a chess piece, spending the most time at outside CB but also playing significant snaps at FS, slot CB, and box S. From both press and off, player filled many responsibilities, including jam, bail and off man against WRs and some TEs. Zone responsibilities include hitch/curl, curl/flat, Cover 1 and deep half and third with occasional robber.

● Best Game – Florida (10/03/2020)

● Worst Game – Ole Miss (11/14/2020)

● Best Trait – Length

● Key Stats – 7 career INTs

● Starts/Games – 19/31

● Pro Comparison – Sloppy Richard Sherman

 

16. Aaron Robinson, UCF, 5-11, 190

Played 13 games for Alabama as a true freshman, primarily on special teams, before transferring and being forced to take a redshirt. Named honorable mention All-American and second-team All-AAC in 2019, repeating as second-team All-AAC in 2020. Four-star HS recruit. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational slot CB you can win with in a man or pattern-matching scheme. Run-stuffing corner who shows the physicality to match up with TEs and RBs in Man and can be trusted to consistently make aggressive tackles… Limits defensive schemes due to mental processing, getting picked on in pure Zone. Doesn’t have foot speed to keep up with faster receivers across the field. Under DC Randy Shannon (third season) and secondary coach Willie Martinez (third season), player was primarily a slot CB from press and off, but also lined up at outside CB, LB and OLB. Responsibilities included pattern matching, man against WRs and TEs, curl/flat and occasional deep-half.

● Best Game – East Carolina (09/26/2020)

● Worst Game – Houston (10/31/2020)

● Best Trait – Tackling

● Key Stats – 5.5 TFLs (2019)

● Starts/Games – 19/42

● Pro Comparison – Slower Joe Haden

 
 

17. Benjamin St-Juste, Minnesota, 6-3, 200

Four-star and top Canadian prospect out of H.S. who didn’t speak English until he was 17, but finished his degree at Michigan and got a Masters at Minnesota. At Michigan, sustained a hamstring injury in 2018, taking a medical redshirt as a sophomore and advised to retire. Instead, transferred to Minnesota. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational outside CB you can win with from press in a single-high scheme emphasizing Man. Lengthy CB who is a H/W/S prospect with intriguing hip fluidity and flashes of potential to grow into a starter…Project at the position, needing to refine footwork and tackling, struggling from Off and when receiver breaks leverage. Despite size, avoids contact against bigger ballcarriers. Under DC Joseph Rossi (second season) and CBs coach Paul Haynes (first season) player was a near-exclusive Outside CB on either side in a single-high scheme. Responsibilities included wall, man and deep third with some curl/flat Zone snaps. Although not a returner, significant snaps on five special teams units.

● Best Game – Wisconsin (12/19/2020)

● Worst Game – Maryland (10/30/2020)

● Best Trait – Size/Length

● Key Stats – 10 PBUs (2019)

● Starts/Games – 14/31

● Pro Comparison – Kevin King

 

18. Asante Samuel Jr., Florida State, 5-10, 184

Father was 4-time Pro Bowler at CB, 2-time Super Bowl champ at similar size. Since 2010, only seven CBs at similar or smaller size have had 10-plus AV, with only one not playing significant slot snaps. Four-star recruit in high school, ran 100M PR of 11.39. 2019 third-team All-ACC, improving to first-team All-ACC in 2020. Rotational slot CB you can win with in a zone-heavy scheme that puts him in a position to jump routes and surrounds him with stronger run defenders. Small, twitchy corner who is at his best jumping outside routes at short-to-intermediate depths. Mirrors well at the LOS, indicating ability to play in the slot… Size is a major concern, getting targeted against bigger receivers and lacking foot speed to recover on longer-developing routes. Doesn’t display hustle or ability against Run. Under DC Adam Fuller (first season) and DBs coach Marcus Woodson (first season), player was an outside CB who traveled across the formation and lined up in both press and off before taking FS responsibilities at the goal line. Frequently isolated in man, otherwise given boundary, curl/flat zone and occasionally deep third.

● Best Game – Pittsburgh (11/07/2020)

● Worst Game – Jacksonville State (10/03/2020)

● Best Trait – Plant & Drive

● Key Stats – Allowed 47.7% completion (Career) (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 23/32

● Pro Comparison – Buster Skrine

 

19. Shaun Wade, Ohio State, 6-1, 194

Started all eight games in 2020 for the national runner-up as a consensus All-American, First-team All-Big Ten, and Tatum-Woodson DB of the Year. Five-star HS recruit (#6 overall) and USA Today HS Football POY. 2019 All-Big Ten third-team selection as a slot CB. Rotational versatile CB you can win with in a base Cover 2 scheme that lets him use his physical toughness on the underneath areas of the field if his 2020 explosiveness and competitiveness issues are resolved. Polarizing high-ceiling, low-floor corner and team captain who has the aggressiveness and strength to be a force in the run game while making tone-setting plays in the quick passing game…Enormous questions about his health and its impact on his 2020 season have to be answered, and his lack of mental processing and downfield ball skills will limit his value in the intermediate-to-downfield areas. Under DC Kerry Coombs (first season), who also coaches CBs, player was an outside CB in a base single-high scheme, lining up in both press and off with some Slot reps. He was most frequently tasked with man, curl/flat zone, and deep-third responsibilities.

● Best Game – Michigan State (12/05/2020)

● Worst Game – Clemson (01/01/2021)

● Best Trait – Physical Toughness

● Key Stats – 6 career INTs, 3 FFs

● Starts/Games – 20/36

● Pro Comparison – Bashaud Breeland

 

20. Camryn Bynum, California, 6-0, 198

Redshirt junior who has started every game since his redshirt freshman season, 42 in total including all 4 in 2020. Team captain since 2019. Three-star HS recruit who redshirted as a true freshman. Team’s Most Valuable Freshman in 2017, earned second-team All-Pac-12 in 2018 and 2019, and named first-team All-Pac-12 in 2020. Participated at the Senior Bowl. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a zone-heavy Cover 2 or 4 that protects him deep and lets him make plays with processing. Bright corner who shows intelligence in every area of the game, including mirror, reactions and against the run. Physically tough leader and a plus hustle player… Capped upside due to lesser athleticism and length, with stiffness and lack of even average speed. Needs to be in the right scheme fit. Under DC Tim DeRuyter (fourth season) and DBs Coach Marcel Yates (first season), player was an outside CB in a zone-heavy defense. Responsibilities included curl/flat, deep third, man and some slot snaps with significant special teams experience.

● Best Game – Oregon (12/05/2020)

● Worst Game – Stanford (11/27/2020)

● Best Trait – Processing/Reactions

● Key Stats – 35 career PBUs

● Starts/Games – 42/42

● Pro Comparison – Less-Aggressive Daryl Worley

 
 

21. Deommodore Lenoir, Oregon, 5-11, 202

Four-star out of HS. Track background, with 100M PR of 11.99 as a HS sophomore. Named second-team Pac-12 All-Conference in both 2019 and 2020. Situational outside CB you can win with as a TE matchup in a press-heavy Cover 1/2 man scheme. Strong corner who has a lot of potential in Jam to become a top backup or low-end starter, with length and hip fluidity to develop into a threat at the LOS…Lacks burst or ball skills to be a plus from off and struggles with zone processing and route recognition. Under DC Andy Avalos (fourth season) and CBs coach Rod Chance (first season) in a single-high base defense, player was an outside CB who saw a lot of TEs, RBs and taller WRs in man. Frequently lined up off at the beginning of the season before transitioning to more common press. Zone responsibilities included flat, curl/flat, and deep third.

● Best Game – Stanford (11/07/2020)

● Worst Game – USC (12/18/2020)

● Best Trait – Play Strength

● Key Stats – 6 career INTs, 4 TFLs

● Starts/Games – 34/47

● Pro Comparison – Quentin Jammer

 

22. Nahshon Wright, Oregon State, 6-4, 188

State champion and all-conference performer in true freshman season at Laney Junior College before transferring to Oregon State in 2019 where he became an immediate starter and 2020 All-Pac-12 honorable mention. Competed in track at HS, with PRs of 6-0 High Jump, 44-10 Triple Jump, and 21-5 Long Jump. Developmental FS you can win with in a base Cover 2/3/4 given time to learn the position and refine technique and processing. Explosive defensive back who is extremely long and has a knack for getting his hands on the ball. Competitive and physically tough, doesn’t have injury history you’d expect with his frame… Out of his depth in man, getting extremely high in backpedal and biting on double moves without COD or foot speed to recover. Uncoordinated and unbalanced. Project with little-to-no experience as a FS. Under DC Tim Tibesar (second season) and Secondary coach Blue Adams (second season), player was near-exclusively an outside CB responsible for press man, off man, deep third and deep quarter.

● Best Game – Oregon (11/27/2020)

● Worst Game – Stanford (12/12/2020)

● Best Trait – Explosiveness

● Key Stats – 6 career INTs, 4 TFLs

● Starts/Games – 16/18 at Oregon State, 12/13 in JUCO

● Pro Comparison – Tre Flowers

 

23. Rachad Wildgoose Jr., Wisconsin, 5-11, 197

Despite only two starts in two games in 2020 due to COVID-19 and a broken right shoulder, true junior who doesn’t have much injury history. Three-star recruit with track background in HS, with 100M PR of 10.98, 200M PR of 22.43, and 4x100M PR of 41.52. Decommitted to both Rutgers and Georiga before landing at Wisconsin. Developmental FS you can win with in a base Cover 2 that allows him to sit back and cover ground with his foot speed and burst. Faster than quick defensive back who uses athleticism to recover and make plays on longer routes, excelling between the numbers… Very stiff and doesn’t display polished mental game, taking inefficient angles and getting consistently beat on timing routes. Under DC and DBs coach Jim Leonard (fourth season), player was primarily an outside CB in 2020 on his severely limited snaps but had spent a majority of snaps from slot in previous years as well as some snaps at safety. Responsibilities included man, including against some TEs, curl/flat zone and deep third or half.

● Best Game – Illinois (10/23/2020)

● Worst Game – Northwestern (11/21/2020)

● Best Trait – Foot Speed

● Key Stats – 49.2% career completion rate allowed (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 22/25

● Pro Comparison – Less-instinctive Darnell Savage

 

24. Chris Wilcox, BYU, 6-2, 197

Redshirt senior with nine games in 2020, all starts, and a handful of starts each season. Two-star HS prospect with a track background, with 100M PR of 10.68 and 200M PR of 21.86. Suffered a season-ending ankle injury in 2018, lingering enough for multiple surgeries and 2019 medical redshirt. On team’s Leadership Council. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a zone-heavy defense. Intelligent defender with size who can zone match or spot drop, making smart decisions when put into conflict… Seems to be maxed out athletically and lacks tracking to make plays on the ball. Repeated, complicated history of leg injuries. Under DC Illaisa Tuiaki (fifth season) and CBs coach Jernaro Gilford (fifth season), player is near-exclusively an outside CB in a zone-heavy defense. From both press and off, responsibilities include curl/flat and hitch/curl, deep third, man and pattern matching.

● Best Game – UTSA (10/10/2020)

● Worst Game – Coastal Carolina (12/05/2020)

● Best Trait – Zone Processing

● Key Stats – Allowed 50.0% completion since 2018

● Starts/Games – 25/41

● Pro Comparison – Carlton Davis-lite

 

25. Robert Rochell, Central Arkansas, 5-11, 195

Redshirt senior who started seven games in 2020. A 2019 FCS first-team All-American. Ran track in HS, with 100M PR of 10.80. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a zone-dominant scheme that aligns him in off. Patient corner who has the length, explosiveness and zone processing to indicate a future role in the NFL. Coaches will look to bring out his high-level timed speed… Needs a lot of development at the LOS and didn’t dominate enough with athleticism at a lower level of competition. Under DC Matt Kitchens (first season) and DBs coach Chaz Scales (first season), player was an outside CB in a base Cover 2. Responsibilities included man from both press and off, curl/flat zone, blitzes, deep third and quarter and occasional deep half.

● Best Game – Eastern Kentucky (10/24/2020)

● Worst Game – Missouri State (09/26/2020)

● Best Trait – Athleticism

● Key Stats – 38 career PBUs, 3 FFs

● Starts/Games – 31/42

● Pro Comparison – Philip Gaines

 

26. Kary Vincent Jr., LSU, 5-10, 189

Made eight starts of 14 games in 2019 for the national champions before opting out of the 2020 season. Also a collegiate sprinter, with wind-aided 100m PR of 10.07 and lead leg of 14th-fastest 4×100 in NCAA history at 38.37 after two Texas HS state championships, where he was a four-star recruit and number two CB nationally. Father was NFL draft pick at WR. Rotational slot CB you can win with from off in a man-heavy or pattern-matching scheme. Blazing fast CB who has top-level foot speed and acceleration and is adept at timing his punches to deflect passes… Size dictates a slot role but has stiff hips and can’t mirror from press. faster than quick and lacks processing to play zone. Other than pure speed receivers, doesn’t have clear matchups at the next level. Under 2019 DC Dave Aranda (fourth season) and CBs coach Corey Raymond (third season), player was a slot CB who was nearly always in off, including snaps at FS before coming off the field in goal line. Responsibilities included off man, hitch/curl, curl/flat and deep half.

● Best Game – Texas A&M (11/30/2019)

● Worst Game – Mississippi State (10/19/2019)

● Best Trait – Foot Speed

● Key Stats – 13 PBUs, 4 INTs (2019)

● Starts/Games – 18/40

● Pro Comparison – Off-ball Ronald Darby

 

27. Ambry Thomas, Michigan, 5-11, 189

Senior who started 13 of 39 career games before opting out of the 2020 season. Four-star HS recruit who also ran a 100M PR of 11.52. KR in true freshman and sophomore seasons, key special teams contributor. In 2019, his first season as consistent defensive player, named to second-team All-Big Ten. Senior Bowl participant. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a man-heavy scheme that uses him in press with safety help. Agile corner who can mirror through stems and uses his arms and COD to stay sticky through underneath and intermediate outside routes… No outstanding skills, getting bullied by the “specimens” with size and/or speed. Lacks processing to zone cover effectively. Under DC Don Brown (fourth season) and CBs coach Mike Zordich (fourth season), player was an outside CB, most frequently in press, with rare off, slot, and FS snaps. Responsibilities included man against taller WRs, curl/flat zones and rare single-high.

● Best Game – Alabama (01/01/2020)

● Worst Game – Michigan State (11/16/2019)

● Best Trait – Mirror

● Key Stats – Allowed 51.1 passer rating (2019) (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 13/39

● Pro Comparison – Less-instinctive Julian Love

 

28. Dicaprio Bootle, Nebraska, 5-10, 195

Redshirt senior who capped off a run of 32 consecutive starts since the beginning of his redshirt sophomore season. Three-star HS recruit. Track background, with 100M PR of 10.64, 60M PR of 6.98, and 200M PR of 21.36. After his redshirt freshman season, appeared in every possible game and has made five of his starts at safety. A 2018 All-Big Ten third team and 2019 All-Big Ten honorable mention, Nebraska DB of the Year both times. A 2020 team captain. Depth outside CB you can win with in a base single-high scheme from press. Shows burst, foot speed and angles to stay sticky in intermediate to deep routes. Shows Jam ability and is a team leader… Disappointing size and COD that severely limits his NFL outlook, particularly preventing slot projection. Gives up his leverage too easily in coverage and isn’t tough when receiving contact. Under defensive coordinator Erik Chinander (third season) and DBs coach Travis Fisher (third season), player is a versatile secondary defender, most frequently lining up as an off outside CB who travels in a base single-high defense. Other alignments include press, FS and in the box with rare slot snaps. Responsibilities include bail, man, deep third and curl/flat zones.

● Best Game – Penn State (11/14/2020)

● Worst Game – Ohio State (10/24/2020)

● Best Trait – Long Speed/Acceleration

● Key Stats – Has 20 games allowing 0 or 1 receptions (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 33/44 (32 consecutive)

● Pro Comparison – Jeff Gladney-lite

 

29. Olaijah Griffin, USC, 6-0, 175

Father is famous hip-hop producer, and uncle is one of the most famous hip-hop artists of all time. Five-star recruit in HS who ran 100M PR of 11.20 with 4×100 PR of 41.61 and Triple Jump PR of 44’0. A 2019 All-Pac-12 third team. Rotational outside CB you can win with in a zone-heavy scheme that allows him to read through routes to the QB and use physicality to disrupt underneath routes. Feisty corner who shows intelligence in zone and will compete to break up passes and attack runners… Stiff throughout lower body, preventing quick COD or explosiveness, and lacks mirror to play man consistently. Below-average ball skills and will get penalized for DPIs and taunting. Under DC Todd Orlando (first season) and CBs coach Donte Williams (first season) in a base Cover 3, player was an outside CB who lined up on both sides in off and press. Responsibilities included deep-third, man and curl/flat zones.

● Best Game – Washington State (12/06/2020)

● Worst Game – Utah (11/21/2020)

● Best Trait – Zone Processing

● Key Stats – Allowed 44.4% completion (2020) (PFF)

● Starts/Games – 16/25

● Pro Comparison – Stiff Taron Johnson

 

30. Trill Williams, Syracuse, 6-2, 198

Junior who has started a handful of games each year, including the first four of his five-game 2020 campaign. Opted out after those five games with injuries after fighting to play in the fifth game. Four-star recruit from HS, with track background and 100M PR of 11.64. Tore his ACL in HS. Played mostly outside CB as a true collegiate freshman before playing increasing snaps in the slot. Backup slot CB you can win with in a press-heavy defense. Taller, stout corner who has the play strength and aggressiveness to re-route receivers and make some flashy tackles… Lack of processing slows his entire game down and prevents effective coverage and doesn’t have sufficient athleticism to recover. Under DC Tony White (first season), CBs coach Chip West (first season) and Safeties/Nickelbacks coach Nick Monroe (fifth season), player was primarily a slot CB and Cover 2 FS. Responsibilities included hitch/curl and curl/flat zones, man, including on TEs and bigger WRs, and deep half.

● Best Game – Pittsburgh (09/19/2020)

● Worst Game – Duke (10/10/2020)

● Best Trait – Size

● Key Stats – 3 FFs (2019), 3 career TDs

● Starts/Games – 15/28

● Pro Comparison – Trumaine Johnson w/o INTs

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