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Clark Phillips III NFL Draft 2023: Scouting Report for Utah CB

BR NFL Scouting DepartmentContributor I

Utah cornerback Clark Phillips III (1) watches the play develop during an NCAA football game against Florida on Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Gainesville, Fla. Florida defeated Utah 29-26. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough)
AP Photo/Gary McCullough

HEIGHT: 5'10"

WEIGHT: 183

HAND: TBD

ARM: TBD

WINGSPAN: TBD


40-YARD DASH: TBD

3-CONE: TBD

SHUTTLE: TBD

VERTICAL: TBD

BROAD: TBD


POSITIVES

— Fluid player with loose hips. Shows very good twitch to get out of breaks and drive on receivers. Has the speed and movement skills to run with receivers downfield.

— Shows good instinct in both the run and pass game. Very good vision in zone. Sees the threats in his area and reacts with anticipation.

— Outstanding hands when playing the ball. Shows good tracking of the ball and attacks it with his hands away from his body.

— Can be an elusive and feisty player when taking on blocks.


NEGATIVES

— Lack of size can show up at times. Bigger blockers can latch on and cause a struggle for him to disengage.

— Speed in his backpedal can make him rock back on his heels, causing him to reach and grab.

— Ankle-biter at times with bigger backs.


NOTES

— Started 31 games in his career

— Three-year starter

— 2022 Unanimous All-American

— 2021 Second-team All-Pac 12

— Fourth in Utah history in career interception return yards


OVERALL

Clark Phillips III is an active, slightly undersized cornerback position with excellent movement skills. He has shown the ability to play in both man and zone coverage.

When playing man, he can play from press and off coverage. When playing press, he does a good job of mirroring the receiver, allowing him to declare their routes and quickly getting into his hip pocket. From off coverage, Phillips shows good tempo and leverage, showing off his foot quickness and twitch to get out of breaks and drive on the ball.

One of his most impressive attributes is his anticipation and ability to run the routes for receivers. Once out of his backpedal, he does a great job of becoming the receiver and attacking the ball, finishing the play with great hands and ball skills.

In zone, he displays similar traits while using his vision to sink under routes coming in and out of his area. Phillips does a good job carrying routes downfield, although occasionally, he can panic and grab or bump the receiver before the ball arrives.

When playing the run, Clark is an active player who isn't afraid to get into the mix. He does a good job of quickly reacting and setting the edge, often using his quickness to beat receivers, although there are times when he can get stuck on bigger receivers and have difficulty disengaging. He is also fearless when tackling but at times chooses to throw his body at the ball-carrier's feet in an attempt to tackle.

Overall, Clark is an outstanding cover corner who shows versatility at both the outside corner and slot positions. His ball-hawking tendencies make him an elite player and one that will be coveted at the next level. His size may be a question to play out wide, but his movement skills are more than capable of playing from the slot. He can be a Day 1 or early Day 2 selection.


GRADE: 7.9 (Potential Impact Player/Round 2)

OVERALL RANK: 21

POSITION RANK: CB3

PRO COMPARISON: Denzel Ward


Written by B/R NFL Scout Cory Giddings