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NFL Prospect Focus: Keith McGill and Pierre Desir

Two tall corners in the Seattle mold. Greg Gabriel

March 07, 2014
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If you have watched enough football, you will know that the NFL is big on copying success. Seattle won the Super Bowl with pass rushers and tall corners who could shut down the jumbo receivers we are seeing in the league. This year’s draft has some very talented, tall corners. I wrote about Nebraska’s Stanley Jean-Baptiste before the combine. Today, a look at two more: Utah’s Keith McGill and Lindenwood’s Pierre Desir.

Keith McGill – Corner – Utah

Size – 6033 – 211 – 4.50

Strong Points – Rare height and length for a corner, press coverage, ball reactions, awareness in zone, instincts, excellent jumping ability

Weak Points – Average speed for the position, has some tightness in his hips, drops catchable balls, not as aggressive as a player his size should be, only one interception this year, age (will be a 25-year old rookie)

2014 Stats – 37 total tackles, 12 passes broken up, one interception

Summation – McGill is a Junior College transfer. He played safety at Cerritos College in 2011. He enrolled at Utah in 2011 and played in five games before sustaining a season ending injury. He missed the 2012 season while doing rehab on that injury. He moved to corner for the 2013 season and became a starter.

McGill has rare size for a corner at 6033 – 211, with very long arms. He is a bit of a strider with good top end speed. He timed in 4.50 at the combine but is not a quick starter. He has better underway speed. He is a good athlete but has some tightness in his hips. He isn’t the smoothest guy, but still, his overall body control is good. He has a good pedal, and his transition to close is fairly good.

McGill lines up on both sides of the field. He is best in press coverage, where he shows a good jam and can keep good positioning on his opponent. He is able to stay with receivers through double moves. In zone, he shows good awareness and does a good job keeping things in front of him. In man off, he plays a bit soft, giving the receiver too much room to get open versus underneath routes.

McGill has good ball reactions and gets a number of broken up passes, but he has questionable hands. I have seen him drop too many potential interceptions. In run support, he reacts well, but he is not aggressive enough. He is not the tackler he should be given his rare size.

McGill will start early for a team that plays a lot of press man. As he has only played corner for one year, he will get better in off coverage as he gains experience. This player has upside if he is willing to learn and work.

Grade: A 6.6

Pierre Desir – Corner – Lindenwood

Size – 6011 – 198 – 4.58

Strong Points – Size and length, athlete, rare jumping ability, dominates at his level of competition, press cover, ball skills and hands

Weak Points – Played at a very low level of competition, speed at combine, off coverage.

Summation – Desir started his college career at Washburn and then transferred to Lindenwood for his final two years. He has excellent size with long arms. He is a good athlete with rare jumping ability (11’1" LJ, 35” VJ). He is very smooth with loose hips and turns well. He can get a little tall in his pedal but still shows he can flip his hips and has a burst out of his turn. He possesses quick feet and can move in transition very well. He dominates at a very low level of competition (Div. II) and rarely goes up against a receiver with any kind of speed.

He is raw with his technique and can get away with that versus his competition. He played at the East-West and Senior Bowl and showed improvement in the two weeks there with NFL coaching. He has a good jam and is a good press corner, can mirror receivers through moves, and has the suddenness required. He didn’t time well at the combine but plays faster. He will need to be re-timed at his pro day. His play speed is closer to 4.50.

At this time he is not a top man-off guy. He plays loose and doesn’t anticipate really well. It is more a coaching thing and learning the concepts. He is an aware player in zone and will look to help out when free. He shows top range. He has good ball reactions and hands and can adjust to the ball. He is a willing run-support player but not overly aggressive. He can and will tackle but isn't a really big hitter.

Desir has talent but is very raw. It will take some time for him to develop, but I can see him as a starter by the end of his second year or beginning of his third year. This player has a lot of upside and should get drafted in the third to fourth round.

Grade: B 6.5

Follow Greg on Twitter @greggabe

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