Round: Fourth (No. 121 overall)
Team: Pittsburgh Steelers
Akron St.Vincent-St. Mary
30 ¼-inch arm length
9 3/8-inch hands
21 reps on bench press
Scout Pre-Draft Rankings
No. 13 cornerback in the draft
No. 102 overall prospect
Ohio State Career: A homegrown product from Akron, Ohio, Grant arrived at Ohio State with high expectations as a four-star recruit and the 70th ranked player in the 2011 recruiting class. He contributed sparingly in his first season on campus as he sat behind upper classmen. Grant saw action in four games as a true freshman, finishing with six total tackles.
Grant cracked the two-deep as a sophomore, backing up senior Travis Howard and fellow sophomore and current Denver Bronco Bradley Roby. While he saw an elevation in status, his statistics showed little improvement as new head coach Urban Meyer kept his rotations tight. Grant played in six games for the undefeated Buckeyes logging 18 tackles. He did have a bit of a breakout game when he recorded seven tackles (five solo) and his first career interception in a September contest with UAB.
After two steady seasons as a reserve Grant moved into a starting role in his junior season, occupying the starting corner role opposite Roby. Starting in all 14 games for the Buckeyes, Grant showcased his physical play with 58 total tackles to finish fifth on the team. Grant also hauled in three interceptions and broke up 10 passes from his No. 2 corner spot and both those marks were good for second on the team.
With the early departure of Roby, Grant was the unquestioned No. 1 corner for the Buckeyes in 2014. Named a co-captain for his senior season, Grant was the clear leader of the secondary and was relied upon to lock down the opposition’s best weapon in press coverage. He was consistent in doing so, finishing the season with 63 tackles and five interceptions. He helped to limit Alabama’s Amari Cooper – arguably the top receiver in the draft – to just 7.9 yards per catch in the Buckeyes Sugar Bowl win.
Scout Breakdown by Dave-Te’ Thomas: With his quickness, Grant can explode out of his backpedal to close quickly on the ball in front of him. He has the ability to mirror and maintain proper position in man coverage and is aggressive with his press technique, demonstrating good form to jab and run with receivers.
Grant does not have that six-foot-plus size and he will have some issues vs. bigger receivers, as he can be shielded. In run support, he uses hands well when taking on blocks, as evident by his Iron Buckeye Award. He has surprising strength and it is rare for bigger receivers to out-muscle him. Even when matching up vs. offensive linemen, he’s savvy enough and slippery enough to escape, doing a good job to keep outside contain and find ways to get the ball carrier down.
Grant Says: “It’s the next step, the next thing and I am just trying to attack it every week. I’m a physical corner and a fast corner that can cover. Being able to be a great leader, I know NFL teams want leadership, they want grown men on their team and I provide that. I’ve won everywhere that I’ve been at and I feel like I can contribute to help another team win.”