Scouting the CB prospects

As part of our series previewing the NFL draft, we examine the top prospects at every position. This installment features the cornerbacks.

Overall class strength: There is an awful lot of depth at this position this year, although this class is lacking the one can't-miss prospect (unless you consider versatile Texas safety Michael Huff as a cornerback, which he could wind up playing in the NFL). Even without counting Huff, there are likely to be five or six cornerbacks drafted in the first round, and there will be quality available through the third round.

The best: Jimmy Williams, Virginia Tech; Ashton Youboty, Ohio State; Antonio Cromartie, Florida State; Kelly Jennings, Miami; Tye Hill, Clemson; Johnathan Joseph, South Carolina.

The next wave: Richard Marshall, Fresno State; Alan Zemaitis, Penn State; Dee Webb, Florida; Charles Gordon, Kansas

Possible sleepers: David Pittman, Northwestern State; Danieal Manning, Abilene Christian

First-round projections: Williams, Hill, Youboty, Cromartie, Joseph, Jennings

Quick hits: There has been talk of Williams possibly playing safety in the NFL and he has been vocal about his displeasure at that prospect. ... Cromartie missed all of the 2005 season because of a knee injury sustained last summer but ran in the 4.4 range this spring. ... Gordon played both wide receiver and cornerback at Kansas. .... Hill, who played running back at Clemson early in his collegiate career, was one of the stars of the Senior Bowl ... USC's John Walker, considered a marginal prospect at best, is a former child actor.


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