CB A.J. Terrell, Clemson*

6’1” – 190 lbs.

Has been a contributor since his freshman season, a year in which he recorded 15 tackles, seven breakups, and one interception over 237 snaps. Became a full-time starter the following year and finished with 53 tackles, seven breakups, and three interceptions. Reprised his starting role as a junior, finishing with 39 tackles, seven breakups, and two interceptions before declaring for the draft. Tall and lanky corner who played on both sides of Clemson’s defense, sometimes out of a press man look but also in off-man, which he both backpedals and shuffles out of. Started fifteen games in each of the past two years and has the type of diagnostic skills/instincts you’d expect given that amount of experience; feel for the game is a plus. Has the length and physical temperament to mix it up with receivers at the line of scrimmage, but more often was using his footwork to match releases at the line, and looks good in that capacity. Looks smooth and covers a lot of ground when shuffling, although his footwork on the backpedal could stand to be cleaned up a little bit. Has fluid hips to stick with opposing receivers through their breaks in man coverage, but reaction times can be slightly slow when he’s not able to use his hands to feel routes; that said, does a good job of limiting big plays, being more  susceptible to curls, hitches, and other shorter patterns. Has solid top end speed to stick with opponents down the field. At his best when defending down the sidelines. Knows how to use his length to pin opponents to the boundary when playing on the short side of the field and defending against outside releases. Does a good job of getting his head around to locate and make plays on the ball when targeted; length allows him to get to a lot of throws. Played some zone coverage against route combinations, although it would be nice to see him get more depth to keep the play in front of him. Willing to come up and make tackles on ballcarriers, with a good sense for sniffing out developing screens. Has the short-area quickness to slip past blockers and flow to the ball. Pretty physical into contact, with solid tackling ability. Doesn’t get quite as much hype as some of the other top cornerbacks in this class, but is a polished and athletic prospect who really checks all of the boxes teams look for in a man cover corner and has starting-caliber traits.

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