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2019 NFL Combine: Time, how to watch cornerbacks, safeties close out week

Yes, the Combine is still going on

NFL: Combine Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The last of the prospects will hit the field Monday morning for the final workouts of the 2019 NFL Combine. This group involves cornerbacks and safeties, two positions that the Giants should be very interested in scouting. The Giants were 26th against the pass by DVOA and they might be out their best defensive back and best pass rusher. While the pass rush did a better job than widely given credit for, the secondary had a tough time holding up.

2019 NFL Combine

Location: Indianapolis, IN. | Lucas Oil Stadium

Time: 9 a.m.

Channel: NFL Network

Live Stream:

Day 4: Cornerbacks and safeties

One last time, before we get into who is going to be participating, we’ll take a look at which events matter for these positions. This graph below was shared by Brian Burke, now of ESPN. It shows the correlation between single event results and the Approximate Value (Pro Football Reference’s attempt to measure seasons by a single metric) over the first three years of a career.


Cornerback is tied with inside linebacker and running back for the position with the highest correlation for the 40-yard dash. The board jump and short shuttle are also useful, though the single correlation isn’t high. This is another position where composite scores like SPARQ will help more than any one result. It’s also a position where size and length will be big factors.

Dave Gettleman has a mixed bag with past drafted corners, though the year he picked three (2016) his two highest picked corners were tall with long arms.

Drafted CB results, by percentile

Year Team Player Pick Height Weight Arm Length SPARQ 40 Broad Vertical 3-Cone 20Y Shuttle
Year Team Player Pick Height Weight Arm Length SPARQ 40 Broad Vertical 3-Cone 20Y Shuttle
2014 CAR Bene Benwikere 148 48 61 6 15 55 92 50 8
2016 CAR James Bradberry 62 81 96 96 93.4 48 69 54 53 38
2016 CAR Daryl Worley 77 81 89 96 55 7 63 45 34 54
2016 CAR Zack Sanchez 141 48 18 46 21.5 16 45
2016 ARI Brandon Williams 92 48 69 86 35.4 89 28 2 63 43
2016 ARI Harlan Miller 205 65 11 46 4.7 7 28 45 1 3
2017 CAR Corn Elder 152 24 13 39 16.3 29

Bradberry — easily the best of the group — was a great athlete. That could also be said of Sam Beal, who the Giants selected with a third-round pick during the 2018 Supplemental Draft. Pro Day numbers aren’t as controlled as results from the Combine, but before the Supplemental Draft, the 6-foot-1 Beal ran a 4.4 (84th percentile for cornerbacks), with a 10’7” broad jump (81st percentile) and a 37-inch vertical (66th percentile).

Chris’s pre-combine top 5:

  1. Greedy Williams, LSU
  2. Byron Murphy, Washington
  3. Amani Oruwariye, Penn State
  4. DeAndre Baker, Georgia
  5. Rock Ya-Sin, Temple

Check out his full write-up here.

My top 5

  1. Byron Murphy
  2. DeAndre Baker
  3. Greedy Williams
  4. Rock Ya-Sin
  5. Jamel Dean, Auburn

Prospects to watch:

I’m not trying to repeat myself or cop out of listing individual players since I’ve done this for numerous positions this week, but the Giants are going to be looking at everyone in this group. Sixth overall is not going to be too high to take one of these corners if they take one. Greedy Williams likely fits the Giants’ mold the most of the group believed to be the top three, which includes Murphy and Baker. Williams is nearly 6-2 (6-1 ⅞) while both Murphy and Baker came in at 5-11 However, Baker could make up for that with his long arms (32 inches) and wingspan (77⅛ inches), both of which eclipse Williams’s measurements.

The same can be said for Rock Ya-Sin of Temple, who came in at 5-11 with 32-inch arms and a 77⅜-inch wingspan. Ya-Sin can be one of the more physical corners and was second in this class by yards allowed per snap in zone coverage and ninth in yards allowed per snap in man coverage (tied with Williams), per Sports Info Solutions.

Jamel Dean of Auburn was also a player who played well in man and zone. He measured at 6-1 with a 77-inch wingspan, which would make him an intriguing option as a contributor on the outside later in the draft.


The Giants were already going to need a free safety to improve on Curtis Riley, but they might also need to look at a second safety should Landon Collins not be on the roster in 2019. This, again, will be another position where the 40 can be predictive of future success.

There is a limited sample between safeties drafted by Gettleman and those drafted under James Bettcher — there is just one each. Tre Boston has become a true single-high deep safety (and a free agent) while Budda Baker has been a versatile defender who has played anywhere from the box, to the slot, to a deep safety. Baker tested better in the running drills than the jumps, where he was well below average.

Drafted S results, by percentile

Year Team Player Pick Height Weight Arm Length SPARQ 40 Broad Vertical 3-Cone 20Y Shuttle
Year Team Player Pick Height Weight Arm Length SPARQ 40 Broad Vertical 3-Cone 20Y Shuttle
2014 CAR Tre Boston 128 31 34 38 68 23 41 36 21
2017 ARI Budda Baker 36 6 10 18 35.9 88 17 15 84 82

This class, like other positional groups, should offer a wide range of athletic profiles and abilities.

Chris’s pre-combine top 5

  1. Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, Florida
  2. Nasir Adderley, Delaware
  3. Deionte Thompson, Alabama
  4. Taylor Rapp, Washington
  5. Juan Thornhill, Virginia

Full breakdown here.

My top 5

  1. Chauncey Gardner-Johnson
  2. Taylor Rapp
  3. Nasir Adderley
  4. Deionte Thompson
  5. Jonathan Abram, Mississippi State

Prospects to watch:

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson might be my favorite prospect in this draft. He played a lot in the slot for Florida last season, but he has also played deep and he expects to play safety in the NFL. He’s someone who is consistently all over the field no matter where he lines up. If you want a player who could profile like Landon Collins with coverage ability — nine tackles for loss, three sacks, 7.5 run stuffs, and four interceptions — you should be interested in Gardner-Johnson. He should be a first-round pick, though he has not often been mocked there. He would be a perfect fit for a James Bettcher defense should be available at pick 37.

Many of these safeties have the ability to move around the defense. Rapp played about 14 percent of his snaps in the slot and another 14 percent in the box, per Sports Info Solutions. Abram has a wide range with 30.1 percent in the slot, 11.5 percent in the box, and another 12.4 percent rushing the passer, all with the ability to also play deep. Adderley and Thompson project more as pure free safeties, arguably the position the Giants need the most.

The Giants could also easily look at mid-round prospects like Amani Hooker of Iowa, Jaquon Johnson of Miami, Darnell Savage of Maryland, and Mike Edwards of Kentucky. With non-existent depth even with Landon Collins still on the roster, the Giants are likely to grab a safety somewhere in the draft.