CB BENÉ BENWIKERE, SAN JOSÉ ST.

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6’0 – 192 lbs. – 4.55e

STATISTICAL PROFILE:

2010: 74 – 1.5 – 0.0, 2 FF, 4 PD, 1 INT
2011: 18 – 0.5 – 0.0, 3 PD, 1 INT
2012: 67 – 7.5 – 0.0, 1 FF, 2 FR (1 TD), 4 PD, 7 INT (1 TD), 1 BK
2013: 55 – 2.0 – 1.0, 1 QBH, 11 PD, 5 INT

OVERVIEW:

Started nine of thirteen games played in 2010, then two of ten in 2011. Earned first-team All-WAC honors in 2012 after starting eight of thirteen games. Started all eleven games played as a senior, missing two due to a concussion.

POSITIVES:

•    Will graduate having started for three of the four seasons he played at San José St.
•    Has been asked to play both inside and outside, shifting to the slot for sub packages.
•    Possesses a quality combination of height and bulk consistent with boundary corners.
•    Overall speed and change-of-direction ability are adequate for a cornerback prospect.
•    Exhibits a physical on-field temperament which seems conducive to playing in the slot.
•    Willing to come up and support the run or make tackles, remembers wrap technique.
•    Does a nice job of playing off blocks, anchors well and makes tackles away from frame.
•    Ability to bend the edge suggests he could contribute as a blitzer from a slot position.
•    Leaping/ability to high-point the ball helps negate size advantages of taller opponents.
•    Possesses soft hands, the ability to secure interceptions when given the opportunity.
•    Also contributed on special-teams units, including both punt block and punt coverage.

NEGATIVES:

•    Something of a high-risk, high-reward player who gives up his fair share of big catches.
•    Wasn’t asked to do much backpedaling, usually zone/shuffle, gets high in backpedal.
•    Didn’t always match up against an opposing number one receiver, played in slot more.
•    Reacts quickly to breaks but often doesn’t plant and accelerate fast enough to disrupt.
•    Despite quality positioning, often appears a split-second late in making the deflection.
•    Missed time in two seasons, including sustaining a concussion during his senior year.

SUMMARY:

Benwikere seems to have been well-prepared for the next level in college, having worked outside in the Spartans’ base defense while sliding inside to the slot in sub packages; additionally, he has worked on both of the team’s punt units. While Benwikere possesses many of the tools and abilities valued in a pro cornerback, including size, competitiveness, physicality, agility, leaping ability, and soft hands, his successes as a player are tempered by his tendency to give up big plays from time to time. Nonetheless, even when surrendering longer completions, Benwikere generally appears to be in good position to make a play on the ball, with many of the bigger plays which occur against him in coverage representing an impressive individual effort by the opposing wide receiver. An intriguing developmental reserve.

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