Gareon Conley   CB   Ohio State

TALENT
ROUND
2

STRENGTHS
Gareon has the length and athletic agility the teams are looking for in a pure corner back. He has a big wing span to knock down passes when he is trailing a receiver. He reads receivers well looking for the right time to break up passes. Gareon has good change of direction talent and long speed to stay on the hip of a receiver down the field. He can cover those big pass catching Tight Ends in the slot and on the outside, and cover those big receivers any place on the field. He shows a quick burst and speed when used as a blitzing defensive back from the slot. Gareon has good enough hands to make the interception. He is a lot faster than he looks on film and this will shock a lot of scouts and GMís and coaches when he times at the combine.

CONCERNS
The surprise is Gareon is fast and explosive but on the film doesnít seem to play to that speed and explosiveness. He plays with an effortless fashion almost as if he is trying to set up quarterbacks but in doing that, he allows a lot of plays against him that should not happen. He struggles to finish his tackles because he doesnít wrap up and needs to get stronger. He will struggle against the big receivers and tight ends until he gets stronger and starts playing too his talents. Heís also has his hands all over the receiver through the route and that will the reason at the next level for a lot of penalties. If he just gains more upper body strength, plays with the correct aggressiveness and uses all of his speed and explosiveness he could be much better than he is right nowÖand heís pretty good right now.

BOTTOM LINE
The truth is this kid confuses me. He shows on film excellent talent but I can see he has even more talent. Heís not lazy and I think that he thinks he is playing up to his talents but thatís just not the case. Watching him I was not really too impressed. He did his job and did it well but he seemed like he was holding back for some reason. There was the Clemson game when he came on a blitz I realized the talent he truly has. It was like someone shot him out of a gun. He exploded from off the line of scrimmage, with speed I had not seen in all the film work I had done on him. He flew so fast into the back field the slow motion had a hard time catching him. I donít think Gareon realizes the talent he has. He didnít finish on that blitzing play because of a lack of strength but he moved so quickly and with such speed I know it shocked his opponents. The truth is watching Gareon on film is boring. He does everything he needs to do but does nothing great. He has the talent to be great but Iím not sure what it will take to bring it out. Right now I think if you select Gareon in this draft you will be selecting a very good corner back that has to get stronger to finish better. He will be called for a lot of penalties until he learns not to put his hands all over the receiver and he will have broken tackles until he can get stronger. Nevertheless there is this hidden speed and explosiveness thatís nagging at me. It makes me think he could be better, much better. It makes me think he could be a pure shutdown cornerback with pro bowl talent. That being said for the purposes of this draft all I can give him is a 2nd Round talent grade and that is where I would select him, at some point in the second round. Heís just one of many Defensive Backs in this draft who could sneak into the latter part of the first round if he shows the speed I think I saw in that Clemson gameÖ at the Combine.

Drew Boylhart  FEB.2017