Today I am going to focus on the 22nd ranked player on my big board for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft.
A lot of things have changed since my initial version of the top 200 players from the draft, but one thing hasn't. Prospects either have the talent necessary to be successful at the next level or they don't.
Janoris Jenkins has the "it" factor. Scroll below for some in-depth analysis of how the enigmatic young corner translates to the National Football League.
Technique: Already possesses pro-ready technique, which is important for a corner hoping to make an immediate impact. Jenkins tracks the ball well in the air, has an understanding for the sidelines and can run with the receiver step-by-step. One of the best aspects of his game is the fact that Jenkins has fluid hip movement and rarely gets turned around.
Man Coverage: Jenkins struggled a great deal in man coverage at the Senior Bowl. This is definitely not a great aspect of his game. With that said, teams fully understand that he is better in press (more on that later). Due to odd rules that you cannot play press at at the Senior Bowl, Jenkins was exposed a great deal.
Press Coverage: Physical at the line, which is surprising for the relatively small 5'10" frame. Jenkins' technique enables him to to play strong at the line and run with the receiver on the outside if the bump doesn't work initially. This is something that the very best corners in the National Football League possess.
Athleticism: One of the most athletic defensive prospects in the entire draft. While Jenkins might not show this in the generic drills during the scouting process, he can pretty much stay with any receiver on the outside. More so, Jenkins has the ability to leap for the ball in the air and does a great job playing it in mid-route. He doesn't get turned around and wont struggle playing the ball on the outside.
Size: One of the major downfalls for some of the corners in this draft is size. Jenkins is no different. He stands a 5'10, which will cause issues going up against taller receivers on the outside. Jenkins might have to switch to the slot in the red zone because of his size. Can be picked on in that end of the field on fades to the corner.
Character: The primary flaw when it comes to Jenkins. He was kicked off of Florida's football team for continually violating team rules. He was arrested multiple times as well. I have heard that as many as a dozen teams have Jenkins off of their big board completely, which is going to hurt his stock. Needs to address these issues in interviews leading up to the draft or could be the victim of a major slide when the draft approaches. He also needs to go to an organization with a strong structure in place. The San Francisco 49ers, Green Bay Packers, New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers come to mind.
Conclusion: If Jenkins can improve in technique and gain a stronger ability in man coverage he will be a top ten player in this draft when all is said and done. Moreover, the major issue in regards to the talented corner in the aforementioned character concerns.
Projected late first or early second round pick.