Size Matters at Cornerback

Because of Green Bay's Super Bowl success, look for other teams to follow suit in this year's NFL draft.

The NFL, like all major sports, is a copycat league. Therefore, the Green Bay Packers, as Super Bowl champions, surely will be copied.

One area in which the Packers surely will be mimicked is at cornerback.

With Charles Woodson, Tramon Williams and Sam Shields giving the Packers arguably the best set of cornerbacks in the league, defensive coordinator Dom Capers was able to line up in his nickel defensive package on about two-thirds of defensive snaps. That helped take away opposing passing games, and their stout defensive line and linebackers were able to take away the run well enough even with two linemen and four linebackers rather than a traidtional front seven.

If that's the winning formula, then teams will respond by placing extra value on cornerbacks.

That's exactly what will happen in this draft, a few sources have told Packer Report during the last month.

Moreover, big cornerbacks will have an even greater value. Packers general manager Ted Thompson hasn't drafted a cornerback shorter than 6-foot in his six drafts. Woodson is 6-foot-1; Williams and Shields — neither of whom were drafted — are 5-foot-11.

Size meets need in this draft.

Of the top 17 cornerbacks in this draft — according to the NFL's official pecking order, as provided to Packer Report — only Miami's Brandon Harris (5-foot-9 1/2), Clemson's Marcus Gilchrist (5-foot-10) and Virginia Tech's Rashad Carmichael (5-foot-10) fall below the Packers' 5-foot-11 threshold. Eight of the 17 are at least 6-foot — even without rounding-up those a shade taller than 5-foot-11.

As one agent told Packer Report: "I've got a guy who likely would go in the fourth round in most drafts. He's a good player, don't get me wrong, but because of the Packers, I bet you he goes in Day 2."

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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at

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