2015 NFL Draft: Cornerbacks Rankings

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We’re out of the day one guys and moving on to the players that should be drafted after day one and possibly day two.  These guys either have clear flaws in their game or lack the upside to make them intelligent long-term selections.  Hey, they can’t all be superstars, right?

Josh Shaw, Southern California

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  • Shaw was a tricky one for me.  While he has good tools and decent tape, I think he falls into that category of players that take time to find the speed of the game.  He could develop into a long-term starter at corner, but I think his best move would be to take a year to switch positions to safety.  He could be great there. At corner, he’s okay, but the mental aspect of the game is going to give him trouble.

    Kevin White, Texas Christian

    Spending much of this draft season as the OTHER Kevin White, it’s been quite the roller coaster for the former Horned Frog.  Receiving legitimate day two hype after the Senior Bowl, White completely tanked the NFL combine and received only a 1.54 out of 10.00 RAS Grade for his measurements.  Ouch.  Teams have had time to go back to his tape in the meantime, and he’s back to being considered for early selection as a nickel corner.

    Ronald Darby, Florida State

    Some of you may have seen him mocked to the Detroit Lions in the 1st round, so seeing him this late could surprise you.  It shouldn’t, however, if you’ve seen Darby play.  He has that speed you want in your corners, but his coverage ability (You know, a cornerback’s primary job?) is not good.  Darby shouldn’t be counted on to start day one, except maybe in the nickel and even then I’d be hesitant.  He might one day be able to develop into a solid #2 corner, potentially a lower tier 1, but I think he’ll have a Chris Houston type career progression.

    Steven Nelson, Oregon State

    The 2o15 NFL draft has no shortage of nickel cornerbacks, and Steven Nelson falls into that category.  It’s possible he could play from day one in a nickel role, but I’d be much more comfortable bringing him along slowly and seeing if you can turn him into a swing corner.  Nelson reminds me of Don Carey, who was a good run defender from the nickel position but not great in coverage.  Like Carey, Nelson could be developed into a guy who can play inside and out or even back in either safety slot.

    Where can Lions draft them? 

    Ronald Darby will almost certainly be picked before the Lions 2nd round pick, and if he’s still there I’m not sure I’d be willing to take him that high (I wouldn’t).  Other than that, we’re talking about 3rd round and below guys here, and with the Lions missing picks due to the Ngata trade that’s where they’d have to be picked up.

    Next: Raw Talent or Role Players