Draft preview series: South Carolina CB Stephon Gilmore

March, 15, 2012
3/15/12
12:00
AM ET
The fourth installment in our draft series looks at South Carolina cornerback Stephon Gilmore.

Scouts Inc. ranks: No. 4 cornerback, No. 44 overall
Bio: Started all 40 games in three seasons at South Carolina, declaring for the draft after his junior year. Finished his college career with 176 tackles (14 for losses), eight interceptions, seven sacks, four forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries. First-team All-SEC selection in 2010, when he led the Gamecocks with 79 tackles, including six for losses. Played quarterback in high school.

[+] EnlargeStephon Gilmore
Beth Hall/US PresswireSouth Carolina's Stephon Gilmore is an explosive player that started all 40 games he played with the Gamecocks.
Size: 6-foot-0 , 190 pounds
40-yard dash: 4.40
Vertical jump: 36 inches
Broad jump: 10-foot-3
20-yard shuttle: 3.94 seconds
Three-cone drill: 6.61 seconds

Broaddus Breakdown (viewed Arkansas, Florida and Clemson games): Lined up at left corner for the Gamecocks but also played in the slot and even some safety in certain schemes. … Is an explosive player that moves with ease. Has outstanding, quick feet and reactions. When he sees it, he goes. … Nice job of driving on the slant against Arkansas in a goal line situation. Good position in routes, doesn’t allow much separation. … Has the size and quickness to give receivers fits when working down the field. Nice tight coverage. There is no wasted motion in the way he plays. … Has the skill level to try and bait the quarterback into making a throw his direction. Will lay back and make the quarterback feel he has a window, then break on the ball. … Plays with nice technique in the way he defends passes with his hands and arms. Tends to peek in the backfield at the quarterback during his pedal. Plays with feel on the receivers in route. … Can be physical when he is asked to play press, man coverage. Will get his hands on his man, then run with him. … As for his ball skills, only saw one opportunity where he dropped a sure interception. Would not say that he has the ball skills of a Morris Claiborne from watching his combine workout and would also not call him a physical tackler like Dre' Kirkpatrick, but he will attempt to wrap up his man in the open field. Will go low on ball carriers, too. … There are two areas where you do see physical play. One is in the press coverage on receivers. The second is when he comes off the edge as a blitzer. He has a real feel for how to do this. In the Florida game, did a really nice job of beating the running back’s block around the corner and hitting Scott Brantley in the back, which resulted in a sack and fumble. Later in the season against Clemson, came on the same blitz and caused an incomplete pass when he hit the quarterback from the blind side. … Is a very natural player in the way he moves and reacts. His 3.94 20-yard shuttle at the combine is a great example of his lateral quickness and footwork. Very well could be the second cornerback on a lot of teams' boards, but I have him behind Claiborne and Kirkpatrick.

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