Devin McCourty  CB  Rutgers 

TALENT BOARD

 Round 2


 

STRENGTHS

Devin has the talent, football intelligence, size, speed and techniques to be a very good cornerback at the next level.  He is smart and although Devin doesn't have the quick-twitch burst that you see in a top flight corner, he does have excellent make-up speed.  He also has great feet and understands how to defend every pass.  Because Devin doesn't have the elite quickness as a corner, he compensates by understanding how to use the defensive scheme to help himself out.   He likes the challenge of man-to-man defense and the truth is that he is a better man-to-man defender than he is a zone defender!  I know that may sound strange, but there is a reason for this anomaly.    

 

NEEDS TO IMPROVE

Devin is better in man-to-man coverage because he is not an aggressive tackler in the open field.  He also struggles when asked to bump his man at the line (for two reasons).  First, he is so confident in his talents that he doesn't feel he needs to use any bump or run techniques to slow his man down.  The second reason is he is not aggressive in his play until his man catches the ball or he is in man-to-man coverage.  Devin is going to have to learn to be more aggressive in his overall play no matter what defense he is playing in and become a better tackler.  I think this kid will realize that and work hard to improve. 

    

BOTTOM LINE

Devin is a good pick in this draft for any team because he is smart and he has such good techniques, which speaks well for his work ethic..  You can see this in his play on the field when he plays man-to-man defense.  In zone coverage, it's almost like he is bored or it's too easy for him.  He has a problem when tackling.  He is a drag down tackler, but is not aggressive enough right now for the next level.  He will go through a learning curve at the next level.  That learning curve will have to do with him realizing that there are a lot of players who have more talent than he does and he will have to be more aggressive and more precise in all phases of his game.  Devin looks like he loves a challenge and will use just about anything he can find to step up to that challenge, so I have no doubt that once Devin settles in, he will become a very good cornerback, a core player and fan favorite for the team that drafts him.  Devin could easily sneak in to the first round strictly based on his coverage skill in man-to-man defense, his character and work ethic.  He can also impact on special teams so drafting Devin is a no brainer for a team that can give him time to mature more in his techniques and overall play on the field. 

 

Drew Boylhart  2/10