Anybody need a lock down cover corner? Guys like Richard Sherman, Jalen Ramsey, Casey Hayward, and even Xavier Rhodes have been found early in the draft. I know quite a bit of teams do and the cornerback position is so deep that I even see first round talent falling to the third round possibly. Plenty of teams can fill this void with plenty of talent to go around. Lets dive in for the interception and see how these studs rank.
1. Denzel Ward – Ward is the top cover corner that can play outside without a hitch. Some scouts have said his size is his only knock against him, but I don’t see that on his tape. He is 5’11” and he plays bigger than his size by playing the ball and not the wide receiver. That’s a great instinct to already have coming into the NFL. For being a smaller CB he can bump and run at the line extremely well. Has excellent footwork to match his smooth hip transition.
2. Josh Jackson – He is already being labeled a one-year wonder which I think is the furthest from the truth. Jackson had 8 interceptions and 27 passes defended just in one season starting at the college level. That’s pretty impressive with minimum to zero playing time in previous years. He is a long armed ball hawk that has the natural instincts to be in multiple spots to jump different routes. Only one single knock that his hips open up too much and gets caught peaking at on the route.
3. Mike Hughes – Hughes only started for one season as well, but put plenty of stats on the board and is a high upside prospect. In his one year he showed that he makes receivers pay at the line and can’t even get out of their routes most times. Once the ball is in the air he has a knack for tracking the ball like a wide receiver and is why he has 4 interceptions and 11 pass breakups for 2017. Being smaller he sometimes allows bigger wide receivers to push him aside.
4. Jaire Alexander – Very athletic cornerback that has a lot of quick twitches and anticipation for where the ball is going to be. He reads routes and ball placement which is why he is always in the right place at the right time. His feet are so light that it looks like hes skating on the field and gives him the ability to use his closing speed on the football. Has a big tackle radius and is an aggressive tackler for being undersized cornerback. He gets a little grabby in routes and has earned some yellow flags thrown his way more than any coach would like
5. Isaiah Oliver – Tenacious and has the speed to show with it running a 4.5 40 yard dash at the combine. Oliver looks how NFL teams want corners to look on tape. He bumps the wide receivers enough off the line to slow them up and stalks the route of the wide receiver to play the ball like he did in 2017. He has very long arms which he showed he used to swipe and bunch the ball out for 32 pass break ups in his college career. Only knock is he plays tall sometimes out of the snap which causes for wide receivers to get him beat on shorter routes.