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The first two cornerbacks to be selected in the NFL draft, Patrick Peterson and Prince Amukamara, are solidified. Once Janorris Jenkins announced his intentions to stay at Florida, Ras-I Dowling's opportunity to move up in the draft opened up some more.
Dowling returned for his senior season in order to graduate and continue improving. Unfortunately, it was marred by injuries and officially ended in November when he fractured his ankle.
His ankle and knee will be the first thing scouts want to look at when it comes to him. Entering the season, many projected him an All-American candidate and probable first round pick. Following 2010, his projection is murky. He needs to show these injuries are fully healed and not going to be chronic problems for the future.
Dowling will have to speak at length about his rehab and the amount of work he has continually put in getting back to where he wants to be. His leg strength and speed will be watched closely to see if it's still there.
At 6'2, 200 LBs, his size allows him to utilize press coverage and not be tossed like a rag doll by bigger receivers. While he hasn't been able to do much on his feet, scouts will want to see his upper body strength has improved as much as possible.
Finally, scouts will want to make sure he has stayed mentally sharp. Watching film of his techniques and the way he locates the ball could be important in improving some of his junior year mistakes.
Look for Ras-I Dowling to claw his way back into the first round as a cornerback teams are willing to believe is healthy. The Baltimore Ravens keep improving their defense by adding another physical member to the defensive backfield.