Tariq Woolen NFL Draft 2022: Scouting Report for UTSA CB
HEIGHT: 6'4 1/8"
HAND: 9 1/8"
ARM: 33 5/8"
WINGSPAN: 6'6 5/8"
40-YARD DASH: 4.26
— Excellent size and length for the cornerback position. Lean, proportional top and bottom half with room to add weight.
— Long strider with excellent speed. Runs extremely well once he can hit open space downfield. Has the recovery speed to make up any lost steps earlier in the route.
— Shows very good awareness and vision to see all threats in zone coverage. Does a good job of anticipating throws and getting a good jump on the ball.
— Patience with the ball in the air. Has the ball skills and timing to play through the catch point when playing the ball as well as with his back to the ball.
— Struggles with pad level due to height. Has good change of direction but can take a few extra steps out of break. Slow to sink his hips, creating separation out of breaks.
— Sloppy technique in press. Doesn't move feet on snap and often reaches for receiver. Below average lateral movement doesn't help his play style.
— Can be a bit of a gambler at times. Looks to jump routes in coverage, as well as taking the easy way around blocks in the run game.
9 G, 25 TKL, 2.5 TFL, 1 INT, 5 PBU
— Two-year starter at cornerback.
— 2021 All-CUSA honorable mention.
Tariq Woolen is an intriguing cornerback prospect with outstanding measurables. He has a rare combination of size, length and speed that will cause NFL scouts to salivate. He was able to back his play up at the Senior Bowl by competing with top talent and holding his own all week.
Woolen is a long-striding athlete who has the top-end speed to run with almost anyone once given a few steps to get going. Even when out of position downfield, he has very good recovery speed to close gaps and get back into the hip pocket of receivers.
When in off coverage, Woolen plays with very good positioning downfield, even looking to cut off routes. He also showed the necessary patience and calmness to play both the ball and receiver, with great timing.
Some of Woolen's faults come when he's playing in press coverage. Sloppy with his footwork at times, he was able to get away with not moving his feet and lunging to get hands on in press. He'll need to clean that up when covering some of the NFL's more elite athletes.
As a taller athlete, Woolen struggles to sink his hips and get out of breaks when in a full sprint, causing him to jump into breaks and even take extra steps to stop. Due to this, he often gives up shorter routes too easily.
Woolen excels when playing in zone, where he can read the quarterback and see the routes develop in front of him. He uses his vision and awareness to anticipate and jump underneath routes. He also tends to get a quick break on shorter routes to get a big hit on ball-carriers.
Against the run, Woolen's lack of strength can show up when he's trying to control and disengage from blocks. This can lead to him running around blocks and also giving up his leverage, allowing the ball-carriers outside of him, especially when playing against receivers with a tight split or a nub side tight end. He does not shy away from contact and largely does a good job of tackling, whether it's a big hit or a secure wrap tackle.
Ultimately, Woolen's skill set is hard to come by, and he does enough good things that will translate to the pass-happy NFL. He may not be able to come in and start right away, but he has the skills to develop into a potential starter early in his career.
GRADE: 7.2 (3rd Round - High-Level Backup/ Potential Starter)
OVERALL RANK: 84
POSITION RANK: CB10
PRO COMPARISON: Ifeatu Melifonwu
Written by B/R NFL Scout Cory Giddings