Thompson Eyes Top Cornerback

The Packers' general manager dispatched himself to a pro day on Tuesday and got a look at a playmaking corner who could be a target with their first-round draft pick. Find out who as Packer Report continues to follow the path to the draft.

The Scouting Combine isn't the end of the draft process.

Packers general manager Ted Thompson dispatched himself to Oklahoma's pro day on Tuesday, according to Scout.com draft analyst Chris Steuber.

Even with the Sooners' struggles in 2009, this is a big day on the scouting trail. Oklahoma featured five five-star prospects. Quarterback Sam Bradford and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy are two possibilities to be the No. 1 overall pick, and tight end Jermaine Gresham and offensive tackle Trent Williams are elite prospects, as well.

One player that Thompson certainly was checking out was five-star cornerback Dominique Franks. At 5-foot-11, he meets the Packers' standards for height. He turned in a 4.47-seconds clocking at his 40-yard dash, according to observers — an improvement over his 4.52 at the Combine.

"I think a great cover corner that can come in and support the run whenever he needs to," he said at the Combine. "I'm gonna play hard every snap. I'm gonna be a great player for you wherever I go."

Franks, who declared for the draft following his junior season, intercepted six passes during his two seasons as a starter. As a junior, he picked off two passes, averaged 17.0 yards on 11 punt returns and 19.3 yards on seven kickoff returns. He's adept at man and zone coverage, which is a good match for the Packers' mix-it-up scheme.

"Franks is a solid, durable cover corner who still has room to improve and could develop into an elite all-around defender," Steuber said. "He has great size and quickness to match up against all sized receivers. He's physical at the line, isn't afraid to mix it up and will remain physical throughout a route. He's quick and stays low in his backpedal, easily transitions with receivers, keeps his head on a swivel and positions himself well to make a play with his long arms. He defends well playing off the line, displays the instincts and burst to react to the action and closes fast. He's a willing tackler that does a good job of taking down receivers after the catch. He has experience as a return specialist. He's a high-character individual and is popular amongst his teammates."

The Sooners also have a mid-round cornerback prospect in Brian Jackson. At 6-foot-1 and 202 pounds, he has the size the Packers covet. He picked off four passes as a senior and seven in four years, and his physical play fits the Packers' aggressive scheme.


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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and 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 twitter.com/packerreport and Facebook under Bill Huber.


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