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King-Sized Corners Come with No Guarantees

With Kevin King, the Green Bay Packers' top draft pick, standing 6-foot-3 1/4, what is the NFL history of tall cornerbacks? We went over 10 years of data.

Being tall guarantees nothing at cornerback. Here are the 24 cornerback prospects who measured at least 6-foot-2 (without rounding up) from this draft and the previous 10 drafts, with data from CBS Sports and NFL Draft Scout.

2017

Kevin King, Washington 6-3 1/4 (4.43 40-yard dash). King was the Packers’ first choice as pick No. 33 overall. He started at safety as a sophomore and at corner the past two seasons, posting five interceptions during the two years at corner. Not only is he tall and fast, but he posted the fastest 20-yard shuttle (3.89) and three-cone drill (6.56) and second-best vertical jump (39.5) among corners at the Combine.

Jordon Vaden, Colorado State, 6-3 1/4 (4.67). Vaden moved from offense to defense for his senior season. He does not appear to be on a roster.

Jeremy Clark, Michigan, 6-3 1/8 (DNP). Clark was a sixth-round pick by the Jets. He was a part-time starter in 2014 and 2015 before tearing his ACL early in his senior season.

Brian Allen, Utah, 6-2 7/8 (4.43). Allen was a fifth-round pick by the Steelers. He started his career at receiver but wound up playing 32 games at cornerback. Nine of his 12 career starts came as a senior, when he had four interceptions. His 40 time matched King’s but he was worse in the shuttle (4.34), three-cone (an excellent 6.64) and vertical (34.5).

Ahkello Witherspoon, Colorado, 6-2 3/4 (4.45). Witherspoon was a third-round pick by the 49ers at No. 66 overall). He tied teammate Tedric Thompson for No. 1 in the nation with 23 passes defensed, coming on one interception and a school-record 22 breakups. He led all corners at the Combine in the vertical jump but couldn’t match King in the shuttle (4.13) or three-cone (6.93).

Justin Gibbons, Aurora, 6-2 5/8 (4.55). Gibbons signed with the Colts as an undrafted free agent. He had five interceptions as a junior for the Division III school; he didn’t have any as a senior as opponent steered clear of Gibbons.

Rasul Douglas, West Virginia, 6-2 (4.59). Douglas was a third-round pick by the Eagles (No. 99 overall). He led the nation with eight interceptions as a senior. King beat him in the 40 by 0.16, the shuttle by 0.37, the three-cone by 0.41 and the vertical by 6 inches.

17 TALL CORNERS HAVE BEEN DRAFTED SINCE 2007. HOW DID THEY STACK UP ATHLETICALLY?

2016

None.

2015

Tray Walker, Texas Southern, 6-2 1/8 (4.53). Walker was a fourth-round pick by the Ravens. He died in a dirtbike accident in March 2016.

Julian Wilson, Oklahoma, 6-2 (4.48). Wilson intercepted four passes for the Sooners. He went undrafted and has spent time with the Ravens, Vikings and Chiefs but has not played in a game. Kansas City released him two weeks ago.

2014

Keith McGill, Utah, 6-3 3/8 (4.51). After missing the 2012 season with a shoulder injury, McGill was moved from safety to cornerback for his senior year, when he intercepted one pass. A fourth-round pick by the Raiders, McGill has no interceptions and three starts in three seasons.

Stanley Jean-Baptiste, Nebraska, 6-2 5/8 (4.45). Four of his seven career collegiate interceptions came during his senior season. He was selected by the Saints in the second round but was a bust. He played in four games as a rookie but hasn’t played since. He signed with the Chiefs last week.

Dontae Johnson, North Carolina State, 6-2 1/8 (4.45). After picking off three passes as a senior, Johnson was a fourth-round pick by the 49ers. He has one interception and six starts in three seasons.

THE SEARCH FOR THE "NEXT SHERMAN"

2013

Avis Commack, Akron, 6-2 3/4 (4.67). Commack transferred from Florida State for his senior season following an arrest and intercepted one pass for the Zips. He never signed with an NFL team.

Jeremy Harris, New Mexico State, 6-2 3/8 (4.48). After intercepting one pass in two seasons, Harris was a seventh-round pick by Jacksonville. He’s played in seven NFL games and is currently with Winnipeg of the CFL.

Marcus Cooper, Rutgers, 6-2 1/8 (4.45). Cooper intercepted one pass during his collegiate career before being picked by San Francisco in the seventh round. After starting 11 games in three seasons with the Chiefs, Cooper started 13 games and intercepted four passes last year for Arizona. He signed with Chicago in March.

Tharold Simon, LSU, 6-2 (4.47). Simon intercepted seven passes in three seasons at LSU. A fifth-round pick by Seattle, he has one interception and five starts in his career. He was released by Washington this week.

Sheldon Price, UCLA, 6-2 (4.46). Price intercepted five passes during his collegiate career. He went undrafted and signed with Indianapolis. Price has played in six games (one start) with zero interceptions. He is on the Ravens’ roster.

Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State, 6-2 (4.57). Banks won the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation’s top defensive back as a senior but his poor performance at the Scouting Combine saw him fall to Tampa Bay in the middle of the second round. After starting 37 games with seven interceptions in his first three seasons, he played for the Bucs, Lions and Bears last year. He re-signed with Chicago in March.

2012

None.

2011

Richard Sherman, Stanford, 6-2 5/8 (4.53). Sherman moved from offense to defense for his final two collegiate seasons and was a fifth-round draft pick by the Seahawks. Now, Sherman is the gold standard for cornerbacks. Since entering the NFL, he leads the league with 30 interceptions. He is a four-time Pro Bowler, three-time first-team All-Pro and the 2014 NFC Defensive Player of the Year.

Calvin Rubles, Kansas, 6-2 1/2 (4.72). A junior-college transfer, Rubles started one game in two seasons at Kansas. With poor speed, it appears he never signed an NFL contract.

Jimmy Smith, Colorado, 6-2 1/4 (4.47). Smith, who intercepted three passes in four seasons at Colorado, was the 27th overall pick of the draft by Baltimore. In six seasons with the Ravens, Smith has started 56 games and intercepted eight passes.

Mike Parker, Virginia, 6-2 1/8 (4.65). Parker didn’t intercept a pass in four seasons and broke up two passes as a senior, his only year in the starting lineup. With below-average athletic ability, it appears he never signed an NFL contract.

2010

Chris Cook, Virginia, 6-2 (4.46). After posting four of his seven career interceptions as a senior, Cook was the 34th overall pick by Minnesota. Cook started 29 games and didn’t intercept a pass in five seasons. He’s been out of the league since playing in six games for San Francisco in 2014.

2009

Sean Smith, Utah, 6-3 1/2 (4.47). Smith played receiver as a freshman at Utah before intercepting nine passes during his final two seasons.  He was the 61st overall selection by Miami. In eight seasons with the Dolphins, Chiefs and Raiders, Smith has started 115 of a possible 128 games and recorded 12 interceptions.

2008

None.

2007

None.

Bill Huber is publisher of PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at packwriter2002@yahoo.com or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at www.twitter.com/PackerReport.


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