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Alfonzo Dennard, NFL Draft 2012: The 'Other' Husker CB

Last year the race for #1 corner was a two horse affair between LSU's Patrick Peterson, and Nebraska's Prince Amukumara. Ultimately Peterson won, and Amukumara fell in the draft- ultimately winding up in New York. The man who started across from Prince, Alfonzo Dennard wont have the same luck in April's draft. He will not be the second, or even third CB taken, but he provides some upside for a team looking for a #2 corner, or elite nickel CB.

Unless you've been living under a rock for the last decade you know that the NFL has become size obsessed. Every time a player like Cam Newton comes along and plays well the measuring tape is raised a couple of inches on what is an 'acceptable height' for a quarterback. We often forget that Darrelle Revis is just 5'11", but one of the common knocks on Dennard is his small(er) 5'10" frame; but at 205 lbs he's stocky and carries that weight fairly well running a 4.55 in Indianapolis, and jumping a fantastic 37". He looks like a traditional bump CB who can hold his receiver in man coverage and interrupt his routes- the problem is: With the NFL's rules benefiting WRs there are questions whether he has the finesse to play the position at the NFL level.

Mocking the Draft gives us a great breakdown of Dennard vs. Alshon Jeffrey from this season. Ostensibly it's clear he has the skill to cover top level WRs, but not always the ideal technique you're looking for. This is a sentiment echoed by the National Football Post.

He's strong/feisty, can press off the line and turn and run. Needs to clean up some technical flaws both in press and off the line, which hinders his balance. But can be a guy who could start both on the outside and in the slot at the next level.

If Dennard were to wind up in Atlanta he could sit behind Dunta Robinson and Brent Grimes and learn his craft. He will not succeed if thrust into a starting job immediately, but in time with a little grooming he has the talent to become a starting CB. Currently trending with a late 2nd round grade he would be a good option for the Falcons.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.