The defensive players in this draft continue to impress the scouts and general managers. If the NFL Scouting Combine is any indication of what we’ll see this season, we’re in for a special season. Though the recent Jalen Carter news left us with something sad to ponder, his former Georgia Bulldogs teammate Kelee Ringo is rising quickly on the draft boards. The 6′ 1″ cornerback from the NCAA champions is showing off impressive athleticism with his speed.
Some may question Ringo’s man coverage ability but this is something coaches can easily work with him on. Ringo may be more of a zone coverage cornerback but he has the speed and press ability to be in man coverage situations. If he can tweak the coverage abilities just a bit, he’ll be ready to take on any NFL receiver. He hits really hard for a cornerback. His hit power is more like a safety than a cornerback but that’s really nice to see. If anyone questions Ringo’s ability to succeed at the next level due to being more of a “zone coverage” cornerback, it may be a good idea to talk to Former NFL legend Richard Sherman about that. He put many hours of hard work in and became one of the best cornerbacks of all time. Ringo has that same potential.
Cornerbacks who are over six feet tall tend to be more zone coverage corners due to being more physical but without nearly as much speed as a 5′ 10″ corner or a 5′ 11″ corner. Don’t tell that to Ringo who ran a 4.37 40-yard dash (unofficial time). Though Michigan’s D.J. Turner II posted a better time, it’s important to not discount what Ringo can do.
Some question if Ringo will be anything more than a zone coverage cornerback but with that speed and press ability, being used strictly for zone coverages will be a catastrophic mistake. He has to do more than that even if developing his skill set takes time. Coaches must be willing to help him work on that. That will take some time but it will be worth it. Every rookie has a glaring weakness to work on.
You won’t find too many rookies that scouts consider an immediate “Jack of all trades”. Such rookies rarely, if ever exist. Ringo has a track background so he has the ability to keep up with receivers rather easily.
Other cornerbacks to watch come draft time:
D.J. Turner II -Michigan
Turner ran the fastest 40-yard dash with a time of 4.27 seconds. He could be a late second-round or third-round steal.
Jakoriam Bennett -Maryland
Bennett ran a 4.31 seconds 40-yard dash. He’s another burner to keep your eyes on.
Darius Rush- South Carolina
It’s always interesting to see former wide receivers become cornerbacks. Rush ran a 4.37 seconds 40-yard dash. What can he do at the next level?
Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson- TCU
Hodges-Tomlinson is the nephew of legendary running back LaDanian Tomlinson of the Chargers. Hodges-Tomlinson ran a 4.42 seconds 40-yard dash. Is there such greatness in his future?
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