NFL Draft 2013: Tracking the Best Available CBs
One of the most important tools for any war room is knowing which available player ranks best at every position on the field. That's why, on draft day, the big board is such a crucial element of a team's draft.
Bleacher Report draft expert Matt Miller assembled his final 2013 NFL draft big board on April 22 and ranked every player in the draft. From Miller's list, I'll update the best available cornerback left on the board and also keep a running tally of where every cornerback goes in the draft.
So check back often during the draft Thursday through Saturday to keep track of every cornerback that's selected in the 2013 NFL draft.
22. Johnny Adams, Michigan State
You can view Johnny Adams’ complete scouting report from Dan Tylicki by clicking here.
Adams uses good instincts to stick with receivers from the line of scrimmage through the passing route. He does well with recognizing when to release from coverage and play the football.
Adams put up relatively good numbers at Michigan State. In his four years there, he had 11 interceptions and 34 passes defended. He also has nice speed; while his 4.48 in the 40-yard dash isn't elite, it does show he can stretch the field.
Also, he's athletic and aggressive enough to make tough plays against receivers, even if they are bigger than him. He has no problem playing physically despite not having the best build for the NFL.
Adams is sometimes more in making a play or hitting someone than he is staying with the proper coverage solution. If he can find a way to maintain his aggressiveness at the next level without being careless, Adams could become a very decent nickel corner.
The problem with Adams comes in man defense. He tends to move inward and in front of opponents, which is great in a zone scheme when you have another defender nearby, but in man, if he gets beat, that's six points, and beat in coverage was precisely what happened to him more than once last year.
Overall, Adams ranks as the No. 22 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL Draft class.
24. Nickell Robey, Southern California
You can view Nickell Robey’s complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
It doesn’t seem to matter to Robey that he’s 5’7” and weighs less than 170 pounds. He wants to hit and run like he’s 30 pounds heavier. Robey uses his speed and athleticism to make up for any size shortcomings.
Robey is one of the draft's premier athletes. Even though he ran a 4.53 40-yard dash at the NFL combine, Robey has the speed to keep up with quicker receivers.
He's extremely light on his feet, is fluid throughout his hips and can easily turn and run with receivers. Robey also displays excellent balance and quickness.
Being small has its advantages. Robey moves while in coverage as well as anyone in the draft. His feet are quick and he makes turns and adjusts to the football with great ease.
Playing the Ball
One of Robey's strongest abilities is playing the ball. He is able to adjust to throws while the ball is in the air.
Robey does a good job at turning his head and getting his feet under him. His leaping ability allows him to be a factor in jump balls.
Overall, Robey ranks as the No. 24 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL Draft class.
26. Josh Johnson, Purdue
You can view Josh Johnson’s complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Johnson is capable of playing in both man and zone coverages and uses quick feet and has a fleetness about him that allows him to be near the action at all times. Per Stein:
The way that Johnson plays the ball when it's in the air is special. Whether he's planting his foot and driving on the ball or playing a jump ball in the air, Johnson does a great job of breaking up passes and making plays.
Even though Johnson has ballhawking skills, he doesn’t win a lot of balls in the air. He’s not confident against taller receivers and tends to lose out in foot races. Per Stein:
Johnson lacks the elite speed needed to keep up with the top receivers on the outside in the NFL and that limits his ability to turn and trail receivers.
There are also concerns about his issues with receiving too many penalties in the secondary. Too often, Johnson will attempt to get physical down the field and draw pass interference calls.
Overall, Johnson ranks as the No. 26 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
27. Adrian Bushell, Louisville
You can view Adrian Bushell’s complete scouting report from Dan Tylicki by clicking here.
Bushell has a brashness about him that helps in coverage, especially when he’s playing press man. He’s able to stay with his coverage responsibility well into and throughout the route. Per Tylicki:
Bushell is a very aggressive cornerback and can be called on to blitz and make hard tackles easily. He has plenty of special teams and kick return experience as well.
He does a good job of reading defenders, and his footwork is good enough that he can adjust his route if he needs to. His 14 passes defended last year also speaks volumes about his ability.
In press man, confidence will only go so far. Bushell is undersized and get’s mauled by bigger, more physical receivers. Per Tylicki:
Bushell is somewhat undersized for the position at 5'9"-5'10", and he is one of the smallest CB prospects available. That's not a deal-breaker if he has a great build or great speed, but he has neither.
Despite the strengths, he is too aggressive at times, and is susceptible to play fakes. He's also an inconsistent tackler, and there are times that a wide receiver can break his way out of one of Bushell's tackles.
Overall, Bushell ranks as the No. 27 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
28. Rod Sweeting, Georgia Tech
You can view Rod Sweeting’s complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Being a Georgia Tech kid, you know Sweeting has a head for football. On top of his intelligence, he has a composed feel to him while on the field, which keeps him making solid decisions. Per Stein:
One of Sweeting's biggest strengths is his intelligence. He's a smart player who is rarely out of position and understands the intricacies of playing his position.
Sweeting needs to show that he has another gear at the top end. He’s often proved slow by receivers in lengthy routes. He also could stand to add some weight, which might negatively affect his speed. Per Stein:
While Sweeting has good height for a cornerback, his weight of 189 pounds is simply too light to keep up with the physicality of the NFL game. The bigger problem, however, is that Sweeting simply doesn't have the frame to add more weight.
There are also questions surrounding Sweeting's straight-line speed. He has difficulty turning and running with receivers and trailing them down the field.
Overall, Sweeting ranks as the No. 28 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
30. Mike Edwards, Hawaii
You can view Mike Edwards’ scouting notes from Optimum Scouting by clicking here.
Edwards isn’t a terrifically polished option at cornerback and comes to the NFL draft with off-the-field issues (WATE Channel 6), but he shined last season in coverage and as a special-teams ace. Per Optimum Scouting:
Despite his think build and 5’10, 180 pound size, he chops his feet quickly, allowing in accelerate horizontally and vertically in coverage. A little high in his initial back pedal, he shows a willingness to utilize his hands and stay active and tight with receivers down the field, consistently frustrating their path downfield.
Overall, Edwards ranks as the No. 30 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
31. Travis Howard, Ohio State
You can view Travis Howard’s complete scouting report from Ryan Alfieri by clicking here.
Howard has good size and isn’t hindered by his 6’1” frame as he backpedals and turns to pursue. He loves to play the run and sticks his hits with an apparent smile. Per Alfieri:
+ Long arms, good height for the position.
+ Solid ball skills.
+ Big-time hitter.
+ Fills gaps in the run game.
Howard likes to hit, but sometimes doesn’t use proper technique to wrap up and bring ball carriers to the ground. He’s also not nearly as adept in zone coverage as he in man. Per Alfieri:
- Stiff hips.
- Lack of awareness in zone.
- Poor change-of-direction ability.
- Struggles to anticipate routes.
Overall, Howard ranks as the No. 31 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
33. Vernon Kearney, Lane
You can view Vernon Kearney’s scouting notes from Optimum Scouting by clicking here.
Kearney had a great showing at the Raycom All-Star Classic and may have enhanced his draft stock. Per Optimum Scouting:
As you’ll see with most of this list, Kearney adds another small schooler to this list. Kearney has great length, explosion upfield, and the ability to adjust vertically quickly with great short-area hip fluidity. While some teams may consider him at cornerback, he may be best fit in the Cover 2 safety role. Regardless, he has the athleticism, length, and coverage ability to be a later round draft pick, maybe higher with a good week here.
Overall, Kearney ranks as the No. 33 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
35. Dax Swanson, Sam Houston State
You can view Dax Swanson’s complete scouting report from Jeff Risdon by clicking here.
Swanson is a talented defensive back with good ball skills and an aggressive manner to attacking the football. Per Risdon:
Swanson has the speed and acceleration to make the jump from the top of FCS to the NFL. His 4.43 time at his pro day is legit. His burst out of breaks is very good, giving him the ability to click and close on the ball. Swanson has a strong feeling for route anticipation and how the receiver is going to attack him.
Without limiting his speed, Swanson must fiond a way to add bulk at the NFL level. He’s limited in playing the run because he’s bowled over at times by bigger ball carriers, or blockers. Per Risdon:
Swanson is pretty averaged sized at 5’10” and 186, but his body frame is slender and he has maxed it out. His jam is not very physical and he doesn’t force receivers off track well. He has little experience against top-level receivers or quarterbacks after transferring to SHSU from Toledo, though he did play well against Texas A&M.
Overall, Swanson ranks as the No. 35 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
1. Dee Milliner, Alabama
You can view Dee Milliner's complete scouting report from Ryan Lownes by clicking here.
Not only does Milliner come up with footballs he's supposed to get, he does a great job at fighting with receivers for jump balls that lesser cornerbacks can't get to. Per Lownes:
He attacks the ball in the air, breaking up more passes than any college defensive back I have watched. Milliner closes quickly with tremendous speed and does a remarkable job of timing, baiting quarterbacks and making plays at the perfect moment.
Milliner has good size and speed and is able to use his physicality to fight with receivers at the line of scrimmage and stay with them down the field. He doesn't get lost after the snap. Lownes continued:
Milliner possesses the size and speed necessary to match up against today’s elite athletes at wide receiver. While not always quick in his backpedal, he shows the speed to recover and demonstrates impressive fluidity in his hips.
Overall, Milliner ranks as the No. 1 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 1, Pick 9, New York Jets
9. D.J. Hayden, Houston
You can view D.J. Hayden's complete scouting report from Dan Tylicki by clicking here.
No cornerback is rising on draft boards faster than Hayden. Not only might he work his way into the first round, it's possible had he not suffered his near fatal heart issue he would have been the top cornerback in the draft. Per Tylicki:
Hayden's injury is one of the most shocking stories I've read on a draft prospect. On a routine practice play, he was tackled on a play that tore his vena cava, a major vein of the heart. The injury has a 95 percent fatality rate.
He not only survived, but recovered enough in time to perform in Houston's pro day and looked great there. That alone makes one have to root for the guy, even if he ends up on a rival team. It really is a miraculous story.
Hayden has two attributes that are crucial in a cornerback: toughness and quickness. He uses his speed and agility to stay with receivers and his aggressive coverage mannerisms tend to negatively effect receivers. Via Tylicki:
Cornerbacks do not run two interceptions back for touchdowns in a season without having great ball awareness. Hayden is able to read defenders and get his hands up at the right time.
Overall, Hayden ranks as the No. 9 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 1, Pick 12, Oakland Raiders
2. Desmond Trufant, Washington
You can view Desmond Trufant's complete scouting report from Sigmund Bloom by clicking here.
Not only does Trufant have the size and athleticism to stick with receivers on the outside, but he can also move inside and play the slot with ease. He's a smart player from a football family who thinks his way out of trouble. Per Bloom:
Trufant has played man and zone and is accomplished at both. He shines the brightest in press-bail because of his combination of aggressiveness and athleticism.
Trufant gets to the football and isn't afraid to make a hit. He works through blocks seemingly by sheer passion alone (via Bloom):
Trufant is not shy against the run and is generally very active, but with mixed results. He closes quickly on plays in front of him and will try to stalemate his blocker to force the running back inside, but sometimes gets overpowered by wide receivers. He's not a strong or sure tackler in the open field, but he's not a liability against the run, either.
Overall, Trufant ranks as the No. 2 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 1, Pick 22, Atlanta Falcons
4. Xavier Rhodes, Florida State
You can view Xavier Rhodes' complete scouting report from Ryan Alfieri by clicking here.
Rhodes doesn't have a ton of experience in zone coverage or playing inside between the hash marks because of his injury history. Per Alfieri:
Rhodes has no off-field incidents to speak of. However, he has missed significant time because of various thumb and knee injuries, which brings his durability into question.
When in man coverage like to play with his hand on the receiver at all times. If he loses contact with the receiver he tends to not be able to make plays on the football. Alfieri continued:
Rhodes is not particularly known for his ball skills, but he is an explosive jumper (evidenced by his vertical jump numbers) with solid hands, nabbing three interceptions in 2012.
Overall, Rhodes ranks as the No. 4 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 1, Pick 25, Minnesota Vikings
8. Darius Slay, Mississippi State
You can view Darius Slay's complete scouting report from Dan Hope by clicking here.
Slay doesn't have the game experience of a lot of the cornerbacks in this draft but is tough and aggressive and seems to have the football intelligence to make up for his lack of experience. Per Hope:
Mississippi State used both man and zone coverage often, giving Slay a good amount of experience in both coverages. He continues to need development in both coverage settings but has the skill to excel in both.
The way Slay succeeds in pass coverage is by using his hands to disrupt the receiver. He's also able to turn on a higher speed to get himself into the best position possible to make a play on the football. Via Hope:
Slay’s ball skills are one of the strongest points of his game. He has the speed to track down bad throws and make plays on the ball, while he is also quick to break on routes and uses his length well to make plays on the ball over receivers.
Overall, Slay ranks as the No. 8 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 2, Pick 4 (36), Detroit Lions
3. Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State
You can view Johnthan Banks' complete scouting report from Jon Dove by clicking here.
Banks is an ultra-competitive player who hates to lose on a play. He uses that passion and his intelligence to put himself in perfect position for any situation. Per Dove:
Banks is an aggressive player who appears to want the ball more than anybody else on the field. He shows a knack for getting his hands on the ball and stripping it from the ball-carrier. This ability to generate turnovers is highly regarded in NFL circles.
Banks isn't a cornerback who gives up on a play. Whether he's attacking the ball while it's in the air or chasing a play once a reception has been made, Banks just doesn't quit. Via Dove:
A defensive back’s ball skills are a key factor in determining his value as a player. Banks features the skills needed to read developing routes, track the ball in the air and appropriately time his jump. His long arms also help him attack the ball at its highest point.
Overall, Banks ranks as the No. 3 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 2, Pick 11 (43), Tampa Bay Buccaneers
7. David Amerson, North Carolina State
You can view David Amerson's complete scouting report from Dan Hope by clicking here.
Amerson has some of the traits and play-making abilities of the top-notch cornerbacks in the NFL already. He's nimble and can fight for plays against receivers. Per Hope:
Amerson has the size of a safety combined with the athleticism of a cornerback, giving him the potential to play either position at the next level.
Amerson measured in at the NFL Scouting Combine at 6’1” and 205 pounds with 32 5/8” arms, fantastic size for a cornerback. He also proved his athleticism at the combine, running a 4.44-second 40-yard dash.
Amerson adjusts well to passes as they are in the air and is as much receiver as defensive back, which gives him almost equal footing in coverage situations. Via Hope:
Amerson’s ball skills help his draft stock immensely. He is fantastic at breaking on passes in the air and making plays on the ball. As a result, he had the most interceptions and total passes defended in the FBS over the past two seasons, with 18 and 35 respectively.
Overall, Amerson ranks as the No. 7 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 2, Pick 19 (51), Washington Redskins
5. Jamar Taylor, Boise State
You can view Jamar Taylor's complete scouting report from Ryan Lownes by clicking here.
Taylor missed a lot of his junior season due to injury, but he made up for it last year as he excelled in coverage. He was best at man coverage and staying with receivers down the field. Per Lownes:
Quick feet and impressive reaction time allow Taylor to excel in off-man coverage. He generally displays patience and good timing, but at times he allows receivers too much room to operate. Possessing fluid hips, he is able to blanket receivers anywhere on the field.
Always near the football, Taylor makes strong plays on passes because of his athleticism and isn't afraid to take chances. Via Lownes:
Taylor displays good timing, breaking up passes and separating receivers from the ball. With impressive awareness, he does a nice job of getting his head around and locating the ball. While impressive body control helps him adjust to passes, his hands do not appear as natural as a receiver’s.
Overall, Taylor ranks as the No. 5 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 2, Pick 22 (54), Miami Dolphins
11. Robert Alford, Southeastern Louisiana
You can view Robert Alford's complete scouting report from Eric Stoner by clicking here.
Alford seems to be at home on the outside and uses his quick feet to stay with receivers even on deep routes. He's good in press coverage and stays low with his defender to keep his speed up. Per Stoner:
Alford’s fantastic change-of-direction skills and recovery speed lend to potentially great man-coverage ability. He needs to get stronger in order to be able to press bigger receivers on the outside, as bigger receivers can break his press easily. However, his ability to come in and play man coverage over slot receivers early in his career will appeal to teams.
Alford looks as if he's always comfortable in coverage and he knows where to be on the field. He plays deep well with receivers in front of him and can close ground quickly. Via Stoner:
A very disciplined zone player, Alford shows great route-combination awareness and rarely chases receivers out of his area. He identifies receivers before they enter his area and shows a good burst to drive on the ball after it’s thrown. Good understanding of when to turn and run when his cushion is threatened when playing deep zone coverages.
Overall, Alford ranks as the No. 11 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 2, Pick 28 (60), Atlanta Falcons
12. Dwayne Gratz, Connecticut
You can view Dwayne Gratz's complete scouting report from Dan Hope by clicking here.
Gratz seems to enjoy contact. He's aggressive and uses his hands well in both coverage and to fight through blocks to get to the ball-carrier. Per Hope:
Gratz needs to become a more consistently physical cornerback to succeed in a man-coverage scheme. He does not jam receivers at the line effectively in press coverage and does not consistently gets his hands on opposing receivers.
He is better in off-man coverage than press, as he does a good job of picking up receivers downfield and breaking with receivers on routes.
However, his stiff hips often get exposed by double moves, and he can be beaten over the top when he allows a receiver to beat him on the outside by not using his hands well enough. When a receiver obtains separation on a deep route, Gratz does not have the second gear to get back into the play if the pass is thrown properly.
Gratz has the ability to make up a lot of ground quickly and plays well in zone coverage because he's a heady cornerback. He has a knack for getting his hands on the ball. Via Hope:
Gratz looks most comfortable in zone coverage. He is a rangy and instinctive playmaker who does a good job finding receivers within his zone and closing on a play.
He has strong coverage instincts, and by covering ground quickly, he can come in and make plays on passes even outside his zone by getting a hand on a pass or hitting the receiver to separate him from the ball.
Overall, Gratz ranks as the No. 12 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 3, Pick 2 (64), Jacksonville Jaguars
19. Leon McFadden, San Diego State
You can view Leon McFadden's complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
McFadden has the foot speed and quickness to stay with receivers in man coverage. He has a quick burst off the line of scrimmage and adjusts well to altering routes. Per Stein:
Press coverage will be difficult for McFadden in the NFL because of his size and ineffectiveness in jamming receivers at times. However, he has the tenacity and willingness to play press coverage from time to time.
Where he really excels in man coverage is when he's playing off the receiver. This allows him to use his instincts to react to what the receiver is doing and make a play on the ball.
Mcfadden does a good job in zone coverage of keeping his eyes on area of responsibility and the backfield. He reads plays well even before they've had a chance to fully develop. Via Stein:
McFadden displays the ability to consistently read the quarterback's eyes when in zone coverage. He's quick enough to make plays on receivers underneath him, but he also has a good sense of when receivers are behind him in the zone.
He shows the instincts and feel to make a defensive coordinator comfortable with him in zone coverage.
Overall, McFadden ranks as the No. 19 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 3, Pick 6 (68), Cleveland Browns
13. Tyrann Mathieu, LSU
You can view Tyrann Mathieu's complete scouting report from Sigmund Bloom by clicking here.
Anyone who's seen Mathieu play knows he has big-play capabilities, both in coverage and on special teams. He plays extremely well in traffic and has superb vision. Per Bloom:
When it comes to mirroring receivers in their routes, Mathieu is one of the best in the 2013 draft class. He has the foot quickness to stay with shifty receivers and match breaks in routes, and he also can flip his hips and run with faster receivers. Mathieu will press, but he fails to re-route or disrupt the receiver's route on most attempts. His recovery speed and quickness are outstanding, allowing Mathieu to make plays when he is initially beaten or otherwise thrown off. He does a good job anticipating routes, but this will also make him bite on double moves.
Mathieu plays a lot stronger than he looks. He's a fighter on the field and will stop at nothing until he gets to the football. He uses his physical hands to disrupt receivers on routes and fight off blockers. Via Bloom:
Mathieu is very good playing downhill, and he can click and close on plays in front of him with ease. He is excellent at reading the quarterback's and receiver's body language and will gamble when his instincts tell him to. "Honey Badger" is decisive and fast enough to destroy screen passes and other slow-developing plays.
Overall, Mathieu ranks as the No. 13 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 3, Pick 7 (69), Arizona Cardinals
16. Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Connecticut
You can view Blidi Wreh-Wilson's complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Wreh-Wilson has quick feet and enough speed to stay with receivers in routes while playing press-man coverage. He's physical on the line and has the ability to alter routes. Per Stein:
Wreh-Wilson has the length to press wide receivers at the line of scrimmage in man coverage. However, he's better when asked to play off and give space to receivers.
When Wreh-Wilson gets beaten, he lacks the fluidity and change-of-direction speed to get back into the play. Against faster receivers or more polished receivers in their route-running ability, he'll often find himself getting beaten.
Wreh-Wilson simply doesn't posses the overall skills to be trusted in strictly man coverage in the NFL.
Being tall is a benefit to Wreh-Wilson who uses that size in open space well. But more importantly, he closes distances quickly to make sure he's successful in zone packages. Via Stein:
Wreh-Wilson will be a successful cornerback in the NFL if the team that drafts him plays mostly zone coverage.
He has a good understanding of where to be in zone coverage and doesn't wander outside his designated area. Zone coverage also allows Wreh-Wilson to drive on the football and use his length to break up passes.
Overall, Wreh-Wilson ranks as the No. 16 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 3, Pick 8 (70), Tennessee Titans
10. Logan Ryan, Rutgers
You can view Logan Ryan's complete scouting report from Dan Hope by clicking here.
Not only is Ryan comfortable in both man and zone coverage, he's comfortable using his body as a battering ram in tackling situations. He's smart and finds ways to always be near the action. Per Hope:
Ryan is an instinctive player on the field who does a good job of reading offensive plays both to lead him in making plays on the ball in coverage and getting to the ball-carrier as a run defender.
Ryan might not have the speed to consistently stay with receivers to the point of making any pass an interception target, but he does find ways to get his hands on the football to break up passes with regularity. Via Hope:
No player in college football defended more total passes over the past two seasons than Ryan, who had 37 in that time span. The skills that made that possible should translate to the next level.
Overall, Ryan ranks as the No. 10 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 3, Pick 21 (83), New England Patriots
34. Kayvon Webster, South Florida
You can view Kayvon Webster’s complete overview from NFL.com by clicking here.
In 2009, he played in all 13 games, and logged six starts. Webster had 30 tackles (2.5 for loss), one interception, two pass breakups, and a fumble recovery. The following season, he played in every game and recorded four starts. He recorded 29 tackles, including one for loss. In 2011, he started in all 11 games that he played.
As a second-team All-Big East selection, he amassed 49 tackles (one for loss), two interceptions, seven pass breakups, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery. In his final season with South Florida, Webster appeared in all 12 games, and had 11 starts. He had 82 tackles (four for loss), two sacks, six pass breakups, and three forced fumbles.
Overall, Webster ranks as the No. 34 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL Draft class.
DRAFTED: Round 3, Pick 28 (90), Denver Broncos
17. Will Davis, Utah State
You can view Will Davis' complete scouting report from BJ Kissel by clicking here.
Davis has good size and athleticism and plays well in zone coverage when receivers are in front of him. He struggles a bit when players get past him. Per Kissel:
Davis does well in zone coverage and recognizes route combinations coming into his area. He's often playing deep in zone and is better about not hopping underneath routes when in zone as opposed to man coverage. This will lead to underneath routes being completed and sets him up to making a play on a ball-carrier out in space, which is a coin flip.
He does well with reading the quarterback and shows an impressive ability to get into passing lanes in the red zone in zone coverage.
Davis has quick feet and is strong and fast enough to get into passing lanes and break up throws. His strong hands come in handy when fighting for the football. Via Kissel:
Davis will often try to tackle too high when out on the edge in run defense. Even when he's making plays against the run, he's not driving through the ball-carrier, instead grabbing on and pulling him down. He'll drop his head and lunge or leave his feet early and lose all leverage at the point of contact.
Davis plays faster on tape than his 4.51 40-time would lead you to believe. He doesn't possess world-class speed, but when he's beaten deep it's often because he aggressively overplayed an early move from the wide receiver.
Overall, Davis ranks as the No. 17 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 3, Pick 31 (93), Miami Dolphins
15. B.W. Webb, William & Mary
You can view B.W. Webb's complete scouting report from Dan Hope by clicking here.
Webb doesn't have a lot of experience backpedaling or reading passing routes, so he'll have some trouble playing any kind of man-cover schemes until he gains that experience. Per Hope:
Webb is an inconsistent performer who needs better technique in man coverage, in large part due to a lack of experience as a man-on corner.
To succeed in a man-cover scheme, he needs to become more fluid in his backpedal and diagnose double moves more effectively. He also needs to become more physical with his hands in press coverage, though he has shown the ability to jam receivers at the line of scrimmage when he does get his hands on his opponent.
Because he played so much zone coverage in college, Webb excels at it. He has good vision of the field in front of him and reads quarterbacks very well. Via Hope:
Webb excelled in zone coverage at William and Mary and is best suited to play in a zone scheme at the next level.
He has the instincts to know where receivers will be coming into his zone and the speed to get to where he needs to go on the field. He does a good job of reading the quarterback’s eyes, has good playmaking range and effectively gets himself into position to make tackles on the back end.
Hip fluidity and competition against bigger, faster receivers remain questions for him even in zone coverage at the next level, but he is better suited to make an immediate contribution in a zone scheme.
Overall, Webb ranks as the No. 15 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 4, Pick 17 (114), Dallas Cowboys
14. Sanders Commings, Georgia
You can view Sanders Commings' complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Commings has rare size for a cornerback and the agility of a much smaller person, meaning he's quicker than he looks. He's got great hands and uses them to disrupt passes. Per Stein:
Where Commings really shines the most is in man coverage when he's playing right at the line of scrimmage. He can use his physicality to jam receivers at the line of scrimmage and be a hassle to opposing quarterbacks.
However, Commings lacks the quickness in his feet and fluidity in his hips to play off coverage. He bites too easily on routes and struggles to turn and run with receivers.
Commings plays well in press-man coverage and has trouble with any distance put between him and the receiver pre-snap. His zone skills need much improvement to be ready for the NFL. Via Stein:
Didn't play much zone in college, but he lacks the awareness to be overly effective in zone coverage. He struggles to watch the quarterbacks eyes and simply doesn't have a good feel for the players around him.
Overall, Commings ranks as the No. 14 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 5, Pick 1 (134), Kansas City Chiefs
18. Tharold Simon, LSU
You can view Tharold Simon's complete scouting report from Ryan Alfieri by clicking here.
With 22 pass breakups and seven interceptions during his career, Simon has shown success in getting into passing lanes and doing something with the football when it comes in his direction. Per Alfieri:
At times, Simon appears to be in control, but he has far too many technical flaws in his game. Because of his relatively stiff hips he struggles to turn and run with receivers, with his poor balance causing him to fall over himself far too often.
While a very aggressive and feisty player, Simon loses control of his movements in press-man coverage. He overreacts to subtle "set-up" movements by more polished college route-runners. He has trouble keeping his knees bent, reverting to an upright stance far too quickly.
Simon is much more disruptive when he plays off the line of scrimmage and has trouble at times when forced to backpedal. Via Alfieri:
If Simon is going to stay at cornerback, using him in zone coverage is the best way to hide his technical limitations despite the fact that he has extensive experience in man coverage at LSU.
While he does have a tendency to keep his eyes in the backfield reading the quarterback, he is usually able to explode out of his stance and make a play on the ball when he keeps the play in front of him.
Overall, Simon ranks as the No. 18 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 5, Pick 5 (138), Seattle Seahawks
20. Steve Williams, California
You can view Steve Williams' complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Williams was best in college when he played in off-man coverage. He did a good job of staying with his receiver. Per Stein:
There are times when Williams will struggle to get a good jam on a receiver at the line of scrimmage. He's simply not physical enough to excel when consistently asked to play press coverage.
However, Williams can play off-man coverage and use his speed and agility to turn and run with receivers. He does a good job at planting his feet and driving on the ball.
Williams does very well when the play is in front of him. He has excellent quick-burst speed and can close ground quickly, especially when he's done a good job of reading the quarterback. Via Stein:
Williams didn't play a lot of zone coverage while in college. He does, however, have the ability to read a quarterback's eyes and react quickly while the ball is in the air.
Overall, Williams ranks as the No. 20 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 5, Pick 12 (145), San Diego Chargers
21. Brandon McGee, Miami
You can view Brandon McGee’s complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Not only does McGee have great top-end speed, he’s very quick. That quickness helps him in transition and makes him able to stick with wide receivers no matter what route they run.
As one of the quickest cornerbacks in this year's draft, McGee should get plenty of looks for just his straight-line speed alone. However, McGee has more than just his speed to offer NFL teams.
McGee has solid footwork to go along with good body control when playing the ball. He's got a solid frame at 5'11" and 193 pounds to stick with bigger receivers in the NFL.
McGee has some technique flaws in man coverage. He’s not as fluid when back pedaling, and he has trouble turning his head and maintaining his line while at top speed.
McGee will struggle to get a good jam on receivers when in press coverage. He does, however, have fluid hips and the ability to turn and run with receivers.
McGee can also play off the line of scrimmage, and this is really where he is more effective. In this type of defensive set he can use his speed and quickness to be a better defender.
Overall, McGee ranks as the No. 21 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL Draft class.
DRAFTED: Round 5, Pick 16 (149), St. Louis Rams
25. Terry Hawthorne, Illinois
You can view Terry Hawthorne’s complete scouting report from Matt Stein by clicking here.
Hawthorne is able to play against the run because he’s got a never-say-stop motor and he uses his strength as a tool. Per Stein:
Hawthorne is one of the most physical cornerbacks in the 2013 NFL draft. He's isn't afraid of talent and doesn't back down from contact. He's also got the speed (4.44 40-yard dash) to keep up with receivers down the field.
One of Hawthorne's biggest strengths is his ability to create turnovers. He's got some ferociousness to his tackles as he consistently hits opponents with some pop. At 6'0", 195 pounds, he's got the size that NFL teams are looking for in a cornerback.
Hawthorne covers short routes well because of his quick feet and reaction time. He uses his aggressiveness and strong hands to fight for up-for-grab footballs. Per Stein:
Playing the Ball
Hawthorne possesses good instincts when attacking the ball. He does a good job at planting his feet and driving at the football while it's in the air.
He also excels at finding the ball while it's in the air and winning jump balls.
Overall, Hawthorne ranks as the No. 25 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
DRAFTED: Round 5, Pick 17 (150), Pittsburgh Steelers
23. Micah Hyde, Iowa
You can view Micah Hyde’s complete scouting report from Dan Tylicki by clicking here.
Hyde plays with a physical passion and uses his size well. He’s got a good read of what needs to be done and should be able to play in a zone defense at the NFL level.
At 6'0" and nearly 200 pounds, Hyde is a great size for the position, and has good speed to go along with it. He is aggressive in defending the run and is not afraid to get physical against the opposition.
Hyde needs to do some work before he reaches his NFL destination. He’s solid in zone coverage but has trouble staying with receivers deep in their routes of they have above average speed.
Most of Hyde's film in the passing game comes from man coverage, and for the most part it is fairly good. He is physical enough downfield to block balls from getting to the receiver, and he has no problem tackling the player if they manage to snag a pass.
Overall, Hyde ranks as the No. 23 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL Draft class.
DRAFTED: Round 5, Pick 26 (159), Green Bay Packers
32. Khalid Wooten, Nevada
You can view Khalid Wooten’s complete scouting report from Sean O’Donnell by clicking here.
Wooten plays with a high intelligence in press man coverage and uses his brain, with some quick hands and physicality, to disrupt passing routes in the early stages. He also sees and tracks the ball well in the air. Per O’Donnell:
Wooten has a good size and strength combination to serve as an outside cornerback at the next level. He is strong enough to challenge a larger receiver in coverage. He shows his toughness by constantly getting a hit on a receiver within five yards to knock him off a route.
Wooten finds ways to re-enter plays after coming off, or being beaten by the receiver. At the next level, however, he must stay with his assignment through the entire route. Per O’Donnell:
Wooten does not possess elite straight-line speed and is susceptible to getting beat on deep routes by quicker receivers. He does show decent recovery speed but will only be able to catch a receiver with average speed.
He struggles reading the quarterback and anticipating the route of the wide receiver.
Overall, Wooten ranks as the No. 32 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
DRAFTED: Round 6, Pick 34 (202), Tennessee Titans
6. Jordan Poyer, Oregon State
You can view Jordan Poyer's complete scouting report from Ryan McCrystal by clicking here.
Poyer is known as much as an athlete as a defensive back and uses that athleticism to get ahead. He has great size and uses his body well to make plays. Per McCrystal:
With plenty of experience in man and zone coverage, Poyer can easily play in any system. The Beavers lined him up all over the field and he excelled in a variety of roles.
Not only does Poyer have great hands and ability to fight for jump balls, but he's also aggressive and can get to footballs thrown in spots that he shouldn't be able to get to. Via McCrystal:
Poyer's ability to play the ball is arguably his greatest strength. He puts himself in position to read the quarterback and as a result, he's able to react to the flight of the ball rather than simply mirror the receiver.
Overall, Poyer ranks as the No. 6 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
Drafted: Round 7, Pick 12 (218), Philadelphia Eagles
29. Marc Anthony, California
You can view Marc Anthony’s complete scouting report from Sean O’Donnell by clicking here.
Taller receivers don’t bother Anthony, his height and frame are NFL ready. He’s also got good agility and foot speed to stay with receivers in varying routes. Per O’Donnell:
There are plenty of things to like about Anthony. For one, at 5'11" and 196 pounds, he has great size for an NFL outside corner. His combination of his size and length will allow him to match up against some of the larger receivers in the NFL.
He shows the capability to play well in man and zone coverage. Anthony also has great vision to locate the football and break up an intended pass. He also possesses great upper-body strength to rip the ball out of the arms of a receiver to cause an incomplete pass.
Anthony may quickly find that he’s too quick for his frame. He can be clumsy at times while running and might benefit from NFL-level dexterity-builiding programs. Per O’Donnell:
His long-legged frame can be a hindrance when attempting to recover and while backpedaling. His transition ability becomes much slower than smaller players at this position.
His overall strength is about average, which means he can struggle on occasion when attempting to take down a larger ball-carrier. He must drop his hips and anchor his body better to become a more effective tackler.
Overall, Anthony ranks as the No. 29 CB prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class.
DRAFTED: Round 7, Pick 41 (247), Baltimore Ravens