The National Football Post concludes its early look at the top 2014 NFL draft prospects today with a breakdown of the cornerback and safety positions.
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Note: Our preseason rankings include seniors only. Underclassmen will be added once they declare for the NFL draft.
1. Jason Verrett, TCU: Led the Horned Frogs in 2012 with six interceptions and 16 pass breakups. Does a nice job in man-to-man coverage, size is a minor concern.
2. Aaron Colvin, Oklahoma: Colvin has good size and possesses the athleticism to play both safety and cornerback.
Verrett recorded six interceptions in 13 games with TCU last year.
3. Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State: Gilbert is a very good athlete and a great kick returner who holds the Oklahoma State record (tied for the Big 12 record) with five career kickoff returns for touchdowns.
4. Carrington Byndom, Texas: Great athlete with good size who has all the skills to be a productive cornerback in the NFL, but we would like to see him make a few more big-time plays.
5. Deion Belue, Alabama: Belue will be the No. 1 cornerback at ‘Bama now that Dee Milliner is in the NFL, so it will be interesting to see how he accepts the challenge.
1. Nickoe Whitley, Mississippi State: Whitley is a good-sized safety who can make plays both in the passing game and run game.
2. Ty Zimmerman, Kansas State: Zimmerman is a playmaking safety in the secondary who had five interceptions last season.
3. Hakeem Smith, Louisville: Solid against the run, but needs to improve in pass coverage.
4. Kenny Ladler, Vanderbilt: Ladler has shown improvement in pass coverage and if he can continue to progress, he’ll be a very good all-around safety.
5. Isaiah Lewis, Michigan State: Lewis is on the shorter side, but has been productive playmaker during his time at Michigan State.
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Justin VanFulpen has been covering the NFL Draft since 1997 for different media outlets. He represented NFL players as a NFLPA Certified Contract Advisor from 2004-2008. He is now the Director of Player Personal for the Texas vs. the Nation All-Star Game where he has worked since 2009. You can email Justin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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