Bradley Roby of Ohio State was once thought to be a preseason top 5 pick. He had a fantastic 2012-2013 campaign and was routinely being compared to the elite prospects that came out before him like Stephon Gilmore.
Unfortunately, he's been torched and torched thoroughly this year and he is no longer being seen as a top flight corner. How much of that is talent based versus technique issues? Let's explore in today's 2014 NFL Draft prospect profile.
- Elite top-end speed. Plays like a corner who can run a 4.30.
- Burst is commensurate with his speed. Recovery ability is top notch.
- Physical and uses hands extraordinarily well. Can fight through physical receivers legally.
- Hip flexion is solid. Doesn't get turned around very much and can transition smoothly.
- Size is good for a corner at 5-foot-11, 195 pounds.
- Aggressive and willing run defender.
- Got burned a LOT. Take a look at this chart provided by Greg Peshek of Rotoworld. Original article found here.
via i.imgur.com (Greg Peshek)
As you can see, Roby was worst when it came to PD rate (which stands for pass defensed rate) where Roby gets his hand on the ball once every five targets. By comparison, Verrett gets his hands on a third of all targets. Roby got burned almost half the time as well.
- The biggest reason for Roby's burn rate is his awareness. He often lost track of the ball and the receiver. His play against Jared Abbrederis from Wisconsin was his worst game of the season and you will be able to see that prominently.
- Hesitant backpedal. Technique is fine, but doesn't know when to make his transition. He often goes into trail mode way after the receiver has passed him and he gets by with his ridiculous speed. That won't fly in the NFL.
- Character concerns. He punched out a bouncer after being heckled at a bar and was suspended a few games for it this past year.
Does He Fit With The Giants?
Yes, but in the right round. There's no chance I take him the first round and would think long and hard about taking him in the second. He likely doesn't make it to the third round but if he did, he's a no-brainer there. The Giants are in somewhat desperate need of corner depth depending on what happens with Trumaine McBride and Terrell Thomas, and Roby could certainly fit into the locker room here as a contributor.
Bradley Roby vs California (2013) (via DCheeseB)
Big Board Rankings
Big Blue View - Not in top 50
Mocking The Draft - 32
CBS Sports - 44
Draft Countdown - 15
Draft Tek - 41
As you can see, we here at BigBlueView are lowest on Roby, having him not ranked on our pre-combine big board. However, he's tailor made for what the Combine offers and will surely rise as a result.
The issue I have with him is that he looks like a cornerback, smells like a cornerback, sounds like a cornerback. He's a physical and athletic specimen truly capable of dominance. He's certainly flashed more than his fair share of it. He did exhibit a severe deficit in awareness this year, which is confusing considering he was one of the most cerebral corners in all of college football in 2012.
He's one of the bigger risks in this draft, but if a team drafts him after the first round, I think it might be worth it. Has the potential to be a Ladarius Webb or an Aqib Talib (the good kind) for some team out there.