Hometown: Rochelle, GA
“Once I get my hands on a receiver, they are done. That's what I was taught at Nebraska. You get in the receiver's face all day long. Height doesn't matter, size doesn't matter. You have to have that dog to play cornerback and have that mentality you can stop anyone on the field.”
Hands: 9 1/2″
Wingspan: 73 1/8″
Strengths: Good bulk and strength for a DB – Excellent in press coverage, gets a good jam on the receiver and can turn and run with them – Solid zone defender as well, makes early breaks on the ball – Sticks to receivers on underneath routes, mirrors well – Good long speed in pads – Can make a play on the ball, good hands – Has a true burst, makes up separation in a heartbeat – Decent tackler with a bit of pop – Can play inside or outside.
Weaknesses: Much more comfortable in press than in off coverage, really showed in Mobile – Reminds us at times of a Vontaze Burfict at the CB position, uses his physicality too much at times – Tends to get off balance – Gambles a bit, will make some plays but also some mistakes – Has kind of a funky backpedal, hurts him when not pressing.
Strong for his size; good overall build. Does a nice job turning and getting into position to make plays on the ball. Above-average straight-line speed; has the speed to make up for mistakes. Willing to mix it up at the line of scrimmage with bigger receivers. Plays a surprisingly physical brand of football for a cornerback of his size.
Undersized; lacks the height most teams like in their top corners. Struggles to match up with receivers in press coverage; takes too many false steps and easily gets beat – often makes up for mistakes with speed, but that won’t always be possible at the next level. More fast than quick. Not a very enthusiastic tackler; tackles with his arms and tends to shy away from head-on collisions. Ball skills are lacking; does a nice job making plays on the ball but rarely comes down with the interception. Serious injury concerns. Missed time with a shoulder injury in 2009. Missed time with a concussion in 2010. Missed three games with pulled leg muscle in 2011.
Dennard was a productive college cornerback, but failed to take his game to a new level as a senior. He has the skills to play at the next level and potentially compete for a starting job down the road, but he lacks the skills necessary to make an immediate impact.
Played cornerback and receiver and returned kicks in addition to competing in track and basketball as a Georgia prep. Played 12 games as a true freshman in 2008, primarily on special teams, and was credited with five tackles, zero pass breakups and zero interceptions with eight kickoff returns for 150 yards (18.8-yard average). Started 9-of-13 games in which he played in ’09 and posted 31 tackles, eight pass breakups and zero interceptions with four tackles for loss. Hurt his left shoulder against Baylor and did not play against Kansas State (toe). In ’10, started all 13 games in which he played at right cornerback opposite New York Giants ’11 first-rounder Prince Amukamara, logging 30-7-4 (31-yard TD against Washington) with a forced fumble. Sustained a concussion against Missouri and sat out against Iowa State. Made 10 starts at LCB spot in ’11 and logged 31-6-0 after missing the first three games with a pulled muscle in his right leg. Did not do bench press at the Combine because of a right pectoral strain.
Compact and muscular. Built low to the ground and plays with balance. Good eyes and instincts. Quick to read and react. Shadows receivers in man coverage. Pops out of breaks and closes on throws. Good ball skills. Understands zone concepts and shows route recognition. Aggressive and physical for his size. Excellent leaping ability. Is tough and will play hurt. Has lined up over the slot and as a “jammer.” Has a short memory. Vocal leader with a strong work ethic. Football-smart.
Thick hips and trunk. Lacks ideal height and length (short arms) to press and work off blocks outside. Disadvantaged vs. bigger receivers. Average top-end speed. Shows some tightness in transition. Tends to clutch and grab downfield. Does not set a hard edge in run support — plays small, tackles low and results are inconsistent. Has been dinged and durability could be an issue.
Short-armed, highly confident and competitive cornerback who plays with vinegar. Always will have size limitations, but could contribute readily as a nickel slot defender, is effective in man or zone and does not back down from a challenge. Showed better on junior tape when healthy than did battling through an injury-plagued senior season. Scouts have compared him to Kansas City Chiefs 2010 second-round pick Javier Arenas.
Edited by mabrowndog, 28 April 2012 - 06:09 PM.