CB Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State
Size: 6-foot-0, 193 pounds
2016 stats: 41 tackles, four interceptions, one touchdown, nine passes defensed
Combine stats: 4.36-second 40-yard dash, 38.5-inch vertical jump, 132-inch broad jump
Background: Lattimore has the perfect physical makeup for an NFL cornerback. He has the size to match up against big receivers like A.J. Green and Dez Bryant, and he also has top-end speed (4.36-second 40-yard dash) to run with anybody. Few players possess Lattimore’s blend of size, speed, general athleticism and ball skills. The only reason some cornerback-needy teams in the top 10 may pass on Lattimore is because of his injury history. Lattimore dealt with significant hamstring injuries his first two seasons at Ohio State, which limited his availability and ultimately required surgery. He played last season without any ill effects from the surgery, but he did pull up lame with a hip flexor problem during on-field drills at the combine. Teams doctors had a chance to examine Lattimore at the combine, and those medical checks will likely play a large part in determining where he ends up getting drafted.
Strengths: “Uber-athlete. Parks under receiver's chin at line of scrimmage. Uses disruptive inside hand to slow the release and can punch out of his pedal. Patient from his press, utilizing well-timed opening to match the receiver. Plays with explosive hip flip that jump-starts him into top speed when forced to turn and run. Has balance and footwork to remain in phase with target throughout the route. Has electric, flat-footed closing burst. Can shadow a nine route from release to completion. Has twitch to drive hard toward the throw from his lateral shuffle. Plays with plus instincts. Targeted 35 times this season and credited with 14 passes defensed, including four interceptions. Has burst and instincts to make plays from any coverage asked of him. Forceful open-field tackler. Works through blockers to get to both wide receiver screens and running plays. Wrap-up hitter who sees what he hits.” – Lance Zierlein, NFL.com
Weaknesses: “Lacks ideal bulk and length on his frame. Plays near the line of scrimmage, but rarely jams, allowing receivers to make first contact and knock him off the route. Needs to better play the ball with his back turned to the play. Bad habit of grabbing when panicked. Can be fooled by body/head fakes and needs to better anticipate routes and concepts. Occasionally plays small as a run defender and needs to clean up his finishing technique as a tackler. History of chronic hamstring issues that date back to high school and long-term durability is a question mark -- required surgery on his left hamstring (Aug. 2014), forcing him to redshirt, and missed time the following season due to a right hamstring (Oct. 2015) issue.” – Dane Brugler, CBS Sports