They used extensive criteria that included (but was not limited to) read & react skills, man coverage, zone coverage, recovery, closing, run support, speed, tackling, tracking, physical makeup, physicality, and productivity into determining how those attributes translate to the NFL.
The ten-best prospects at the CB position are:
- Janoris Jenkins – Northern Alabama, Sr., 5’11’ 191 Lbs. – The Darrelle Revis of college football. Show him the opposing team’s #1 receiver and he’ll shadow him and shut him down all day.
- Morris Claiborne – LSU, Jr., 6’0” 185 Lbs. – Great size for a cornerback that is sound in technique. Teams will love this combination when playing the dominant 6’4 receivers in today’s game.
- Dre Kirkpatrick – Alabama, Jr., 6’2” 192 Lbs. – He’s at his best when he’s in zone defense and by far the best in this class in that aspect. Could also be a top NFL safety if a team needs him to switch in this weak safety class.
- Jayron Hosley – Virginia Tech, Jr., 5’10” 172 Lbs. – If he played in the SEC he may have gotten more recognition. He reacts well to the receiver and will attack the ball.
- Casey Hayward – Vanderbilt, Sr., 5’11” 188 Lbs. – Talented cornerback that has been going up against college football’s best in the SEC for 4 years. Lacks ideal speed but technique more than makes up for it.
- Alfonzo Dennard – Nebraska, Sr., 5’10” 203 Lbs. – Could be higher on the list but has to improve on covering the double move and not losing shifty receivers at the line.
- Leonard Johnson – Iowa State, Sr., 5’10” 198 Lbs. – Stock was instantly upgraded after showing how physical he could be with one of the most physical receivers in this draft, Justin Blackmon. Consistent with his other games.
- Chase Minnifield – Virginia, rSr., 6’0” 185 Lbs. – Has the talent to be a good NFL cornerback but gets out of position. Following in the footsteps of Chris Cook and Ras-I Dowling the last few years.
- Stephen Gilmore – South Carolina, Jr., 6’1” 193 Lbs. – He will make such an exciting play that you forget about his next 5 horrific ones. Struggles in change of direction but amazing in closing speed. Like Kirkpatrick, he would be better in zone or a switch to safety.
- Josh Robinson – UCF, Jr., 5’10” 192 Lbs. – Lacks great technique by he can flat out fly. A team should show interest in the earlier rounds as he has great potential with a year of NFL coaching.
Just like the receivers’ class, this is a deep cornerback class and it we couldn’t narrow it down to just five on the bubble CBs; that said, these are the corners we’ll be watching closely during the Combine:
a. Josh Norman – Coastal Carolina, Sr., 6’0” 203 Lbs.
b. Shaun Prater – Iowa, Sr., 5’10” 185 Lbs.
c. Coryell Judie – Texas A&M, rSr., 5’11” 190 Lbs.
d. Mike Harris – Florida State, Sr., 5’10” 195 Lbs.
e. Dwight Bentley – LA-Lafayette, Sr., 5’10” 176 Lbs.
f. Trevin Wade – Arizona, rSr., 5’10” 192 Lbs.
g. Brandon Boykin – Georgia, Sr., 5’9” 183 Lbs.
h. Isaiah Frey — Nevada, Sr., 5’11″ 190 Lbs.
Jayson Braddock is an NFL Scout / NFL Writer & On-Air Personality. Jayson is also a football insider for the Dylan Gwinn show on 790 AM in Houston, TX - Listeners NOT in the Houston metropolitan area can hear Jayson on iheart radio or sports790.com. You can also catch Jayson on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio with Scott Engel and the morning crew every Thursday at 10:30am ET. You may email Jayson directly @ firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @JaysonBraddock