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Cornerback may not seem like a primary need for the New York Giants. Terrell Thomas and Corey Webster are quality corners, and Aaron Ross might give them three good ones. If he isn't playing safety, that is.
With the prevalence of four- and five-wide receiver sets in the NFL nowadays, though, you can never have enough top-notch cover corners.
That brings me to the subject of today's Daily NFL Draft Prospect Profile -- Oklahoma State corrnerback Perrish Cox.
This is an extremely gifted player, with an extremely checkered history. Let's take a closer look at the potential, and the pitfalls, surrounding one of the best corners in the draft.
Perrish Cox Scouting Reports
From Draft Countdown.
Terrific natural athleticism --- Excels in both man and zone coverage --- Physical at the line --- Will tackle and support the run --- Elusive with great vision --- Is very confident with a short memory --- Also a prolific kick/punt returner.
Already has three children --- Arrested in the Fall of '09 on charges of driving with a suspended license --- Was suspended for the Cowboy's Cotton Bowl appearance as a senior after missing a curfew, which ended his college career --- Supremely talented and possesses first-round physical tools but isn't technically sound and intangibles are shaky --- Must keep his head on straight and get coached up a bit but has the ability to be a starter as well as a great return man in the NFL.
Cox has the physical tools to be a successful cornerback in the league, but his perceived lack of maturity and his lack of size may cause his stock to fall. One thing he does have going for him, however, is his ability to contribute on special teams. He's one of the top return specialists in this year's draft class. That, coupled with his knack for big plays on defense, should land him a spot in the 2nd or 3rd round. If he does well in interviews, and teams are comfortable with his character concerns, he could even sneak into the late 1st round.
Cox is a good corner whose value is increased due to superior return skills. Cox had some off-field issues at Oklahoma State, which led to his suspension for the Cowboys' bowl game. Cox' speed and bulk are a rare combination.
Pros: Return Skills, Speed, Bulk
Cons: Off-Field Issues
Verdict: 2nd-4th Round
From the National Football Post.
He's a gifted athlete with natural balance and footwork in coverage, can quickly get his feet under him and then click and close on the ball. He showcases good closing speed and generates impressive power as a tackler when asked to drive on a receiver after the catch.
He does have some character concerns and missed the team's bowl game this season for breaking team rules. Overall, he's a tall, physical corner who can tackle in the secondary, close on the ball and run with NFL receivers downfield. He has the upside to develop into a good starting corner in any type of scheme because of his size and power to press as well as the ability to close in zone/off-coverage.
Why Cox fits with the Giants
Because you can never have too many quality cornerbacks, that's why. In a pass-happy league, you have to have four or five good ones. Otherwise, you wind up playing with three safeties on the field -- a situation the Giants found themselves in far too often in 2009. Cox seems to have all the physical skills and would make sense as a mid-round selection. Plus, if he is a quality return man that is always a plus.
Why the Giants should pass
Those character concerns. This guy might be a terrific player. Sounds to me, though, like he could also be a huge headache. Guys with off-the-field issues that end up hurting their teams -- and missing a Bowl game qualifies as hurting your team -- are guys you need to be leery of. The Giants are not the Cincinnati Bengals. There have to be other talented DBs without the baggage that Cox carries.