Derrick Strait   CB   Oklahoma

Strengths
Plays bigger than listed. He is a good tackler, has good speed and for his size, his arms are long. This has come in handy against the big receivers. He is smart and knows how to use the sideline to his advantage. Derrick uses very good technique. He likes to challenge the bigger receivers for the ball and by doing this, gets away with being physical without getting flagged for it. Like I said, he is very smart, which is the strongest part of his game.

Needs to Improve
Derrick has good speed but does lack quickness. The smaller, faster receivers give him the most problems. He is at his best against the taller wide receivers with long strides. Against the fast receivers he loses technique and gets burned really fast. He is slow in his hip flip, which is what causes him to get beat by the small quick/fast receivers. Another
problem that I notice with Derrick is that he has a problem forgetting. He worries the minute he gets beat and he starts to lose confidence. If receivers get a sniff of this in the NFL, they will eat him alive.

Bottom Line
Derrick should have no problems in the NFL. He is very good against the bigger wide receivers and when the smaller receivers are on the field you can bring him inside in the nickel and dime schemes because he is a good tackler with good size. He will get you some picks when he is used this way. Against the bigger possession receivers he might very well shut them down and should limit the ‘run after the catch’ yards because of his size and tackling abilities. If he is used this way, he will gain confidence and not lose confidence after making a mistake. If you are a scout or coach that thinks you are going to put Derrick man for man on Laverneous Coles or Santana Moss or Pete Warrick and expect him to shut them down, I don't think it is going to happen. Derrick will not have the
quickness to stay with that style of receiver. I think he will always have a problem with the receivers who are quick in and out of their breaks. That does not mean that Derrick cannot be successful -- it just means do not expect him to be superman. He is rated high right now, but before it is all said and done he should go in the latter part of the first round.  He will be a solid corner and should have a good career in the NFL. The good thing about Derrick is that if he is not as good as he is projected at the corner position, he can be flipped to a safety position because he is a good tackler. He would make an impact for a team at the free safety position, which makes Derrick a very safe pick. He is what I consider a two-fer -- a two position DB.


Drew Boylhart