Round 1 – Pick 27
Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Verrett, CB – TCU
The Saints’ secondary is really good right now and is one piece away from being really scary. Last year they got cornerback Keenan Lewis via free agency and safety Kenny Vaccaro with their first-round pick. Next offseason they get ballhawk safety Jairus Byrd from the free agency market and now all they have to do is complete that great effort and grab a cornerback with the 27th overall pick.
Jason Verrett (5’9″, 189) might be that missing piece, that No. 2 cornerback they’re looking for. A bit undersized, Verrett can still be successful against bigger opponents thanks to his skills that allowed his coaches at TCU to match him against the best receiver on the other team for two years, coach Gary Patterson said.
In 37 games for TCU, Verrett had 160 tackles (10 for loss), nine interceptions and 34 pass breakups. Last year against LSU he held wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. to just one catch.
- Attacks the ball after locating it, which leads to many defended passes and interception opportunities.
- Reads the eyes of the quarterback well and stays attached at the hip of the receiver throughout the route.
- Keeps pad level low and is bouncy in his stance. Verrett’s sudden burst in the flats and on comebacks could lead to game-changing pick-six plays.
- Can be too aggressive when going for the ball; has to time contact better so he doesn’t draw penalties.
- Struggles shedding blocks and setting the edge in the run game. Not only is he lacking strength but his hand usage is poor. To become a quality run defender, he will need to improve his technique against blockers.
- His anticipation and timing are average when the play isn’t in front of him and he is running downfield with a receiver.
NFL Combine Numbers
40-yd dash: 4.38 sec* (10-yd split: 1.47 sec)
Vertical Jump: 39,0 inch.*
Broad Jump: 128,0 inch.
3 Cone Drill: 6.69 sec*
20-yd Shuttle: 4.00 sec*
(*= among combine’s top performers, according to NFL.com)