2013 NFL Draft - Cornerbacks No. 11-25

Posted Apr 21, 2013

From a college football perspective, the analysis of the top cornerback prospects.

2013 NFL Draft Position Rankings

CBs - No. 11 to 25

By Pete Fiutak
Follow Us ... @ColFootballNews 
- 2013 Cornerback Rankings
11. Robert Alford, SE Louisiana 5-10, 188
4.37. Everyone expected him to be fast in offseason workouts, and he didn't disappoint in any way. He has track star speed to go along with excellent on-field strength to shove around the smallish receivers and get physical when he needs to. With kick return skills, he can be used in a variety of ways including just about anywhere in a secondary. Occasionally his problem is his aggressiveness, going for the kill shot and whiffing a bit too much. He needs to become a more form tackler and he's a bit old turning 25 this season, but with his speed, athleticism and toughness, he's a fighter who'll quickly find a starting job.
CFN Projection: Third Round

12. David Amerson, NC State (Jr.) 6-1, 205
With peerless ball-hawking skills and the size and speed to match, he has the look, the talent and the attitude to be a big-time player in big-time situations. There's no problem with his confidence, and while that got him in a bit of trouble early on last year getting beaten way too often, he settled down and turned in an underappreciated year. No corner in the draft has better ball skills or better instincts to close on a receiver, but now he has to do the work to improve. The attitude is mostly good, but he can't get caught thinking and believing he has it all down. There's the potential to be great, but his future will be a nickel and dime defender where he gets to roam and make something big happen on third downs.
CFN Projection: Second Round

13. B.W. Webb, William & Mary 5-10, 184
A nearly perfect athletic prospect, he has 4.4 speed with cut-on-a-dime quickness and cutting ability and jump-out-of-the-stadium leaping skills. A ball-hawking machine, he has an uncanny knack for always being around the ball and attack when he has to. While he handles himself well against the more physical receivers, he'll get pushed around and won't be able to live on his athleticism at the next level. He's not going to be The Guy for a pro secondary after being able to do whatever he wanted, and he's not going to bring too much help in run support. However, his talents, versatility and kick return skills will make him a near-perfect nickel defender.
CFN Projection: Third Round

14. Tharold Simon, LSU (Jr.) 6-2, 202
An underappreciated part of the great secondary, he might have been overshadowed by other Tiger defensive backs, but with his decent speed, athleticism, fluid athleticism and 6-2 size, he has the prototype frame and tools. Challenged by teams trying to stay away from other LSU DBs, he held his own and came up with his share of plays. Now he has to start using his size better in run support, and he needs to hit the weights hard to become functionally stronger to increase his value. There's lots of work to do on his style and instincts, needing to take better angles and not rely on his quickness to recover. He needs work, but there's a lot to be excited about as a relatively cheap No. 1 corner prospect outside of the first round.
CFN Projection: Third Round

15. Will Davis, Utah State 5-11, 186
Once he figures it all out, he'll be a strong and steady corner who'll handle just about any job without a problem. Physical, he's a tough defender who doesn't have any problems mixing it up or doing the dirty work needed to make a play. Now he has to get stronger to match his college style a bit better. He not a blazer and he doesn't have the best ball skills, but he'll stick to his man like glue and won't give up. While he's still learning the finer points, that's not a negative – there's lots of room to grow, even though he's not bad as is.
CFN Projection: Fourth Round

16. Tyrann Mathieu, LSU (Jr.) 5-9, 186
Yes, there are a ton of problems and concerns. He's too small, he's too slow, and, oh yeah, the knucklehead streak. Woefully weak to be a safety and just not fast enough to be a full-time corner, there isn't an NFL position for him. There's also the problem of being given chance after chance before getting booted from LSU. It took something truly special to get in that much hot water and never play again for the Tigers, but he never got back in the mix after his transcendent 2011 season. However, despite all the obvious problems and concerns, he's a magical special teamer and a magnet for the ball and the big play. As long as he's drafted outside of the top 50, he's absolutely worth the risk, but everyone has to go in with eyes wide open.
CFN Projection: Fourth Round

17. Nickell Robey, USC (Jr.) 5-7, 169
Speedy, feisty and quick, he moves at an elite level with the leaping ability to play bigger on jump balls and against the taller targets. While he's not a blazer, he has good enough speed to get by, but his real strength is his quickness. Smooth as silk, he can gets around easily and mirror without a problem. No, he's not going to shed any blockers and he'll get pushed around, but he's a good tackler for his size and managed to always get the job done both against the pass and the run. He'll gamble a bit and will take a few unnecessary chances, but he's a functional No. 2 starting corner who'll be up to the challenge when picked on.
CFN Projection: Fourth Round

18. Jordan Poyer, Oregon State 6-0, 191
Great at coming up with big plays with good size and decent quickness, he's a rock solid all-around football player. A fighter, he goes after the ball hard doing a nice job of battling the bigger receivers, while also being able to stay with the smallish ones. Smart and with great instincts, he's always around the play and willing to do whatever is needed. It would be nice if he could get stronger to see time at safety, and he doesn't have the raw wheels to stay with the blazers, but he's a better baller than a pure prospect. The raw athleticism is missing to become a star, but he can handle himself in any situation and should be able to find a starting role in the right scheme.
CFN Projection: Third Round

19. Steve Williams, California (Jr.) 5-9, 181
Really, really fast, he blazed away a 4.36 this offseason to go along with excellent cut-on-a-dime quickness. Smooth, he looks and plays like an NFL corner and won't back down against the run. A good tackler for his size, he'll never blow anyone up, but he'll get his man down. The size is a factor and loses too many 50/50 balls, but he can be a great part to the defensive backfield puzzle with the raw athleticism to be put on an island or be used as a nickel and dime defender. Players with his speed tend to find starting roles somewhere.
CFN Projection: Third Round

20. Terry Hawthorne, Illinois 6-0, 195
The needle is pointing up after tearing off a sub-4.4 at the Combine. With decent size to go along with his blazing wheels, he looks like an NFL corner, and he tackles like a safety with a willing desire to come up and help in run support. Quick as well as fast, he zips in and out of his cuts without a problem. There are health concerns after suffering a frightening injury and being carted off the field, but everything checked out and he's fine now. The tools have to match the tape with inconsistent ball skills, and now he has to prove that he can become a decent starter by doing all the little things right.
CFN Projection: Fifth Round

21. Johnny Adams, Michigan State 5-10, 185
While he's not huge, he has excellent speed and good physical skills. He plays tougher than his size against the run and won't back down from contact. With a good attitude, he has no problems taking on the opposing No. 1 receiver and welcomes the big challenge. Too thin and with little heft, he'll get shoved around a bit much and won't be able to handle the more physical targets, and after an inconsistent season, his stock has dropped a bit – he was a much better prospect going into 2012. He'll make a roster as a dime defender and he'll hang around the league for a while seeing time as a second corner.
CFN Projection: Fifth Round

22. Dwayne Gratz, Connecticut 5-11, 201
Versatile, he can work as a free safety or a corner with decent speed and excellent strength. After some nice offseason workouts, he showed all the requisite NFL athletic skills including nice quickness. With his experience, size and abilities, he's built like a No.1 corner, but the tools don't match the tape. He gets beaten by anyone with a creative move and doesn't use his physical skills enough to beat people up. The Combine upped his stock, but he'll probably be way overdrafted mainly because teams are going to like his upside and potential. He'll do what's needed to become a better all-around player, and he'll have the right attitude, but he'll need some work.
CFN Projection: Third Round

23. Sanders Commings, Georgia 6-0, 216
Potentially a free safety, he's versatile enough to work in a variety of roles and could end up in nickel and dime situations. Very athletic with good size for a corner, he won't wear down and he'll be able to push people around to make a play. Now he needs to start being and playing more physical for his size on a consistent basis. He'll throw his body around and won't be afraid to pop, but he has to be more effective and making the right play rather than just getting his man down. Still just scratching the surface, once a coaching staff figures out what it wants to do with him and once he finds a set role he could explode.
CFN Projection: Third Round

24. Brandon McGee, Miami 5-11, 193
With sub-4.4 speed and excellent size, he has rare uncoachable skills and abilities. Quick as well as fast, he moves around effortlessly with smooth-as-silk cutting ability. A decent tackler with okay coverage skills, the basics are in place and now he needs to improve. It's going to take a while to round him out into a strong all-around corner, and the tools don't match the production, but he could be scratching the surface and could be a cheap late pickup of speed.
CFN Projection: Sixth Round

25. Kayvon Webster, South Florida 5-11, 195
With 4.36 speed that translates to the field, he has no problems staying with the faster receivers and doesn't get beaten deep. With plenty of experience and production to go along with his wheels, he has seen it all and has more than held his own against No. 1 targets over the last few years. However, it would've been nice if he did something when the ball was in the air. Not an elite playmaker on the ball, he doesn't come up with picks and he doesn't seem able to track well enough to come up with enough stops to be an NFL starter.
CFN Projection: Fifth Round

- 2013 Cornerback Rankings