ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr.: Vernon Hargreaves not No. 1 NFL cornerback
ESPN NFL draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. said he does not believe Florida/Wharton High CB Vernon Hargreaves can be a top cornerback in the NFL.
Hargreaves, a three-time all-SEC player at UF, is a likely first-round pick and a possible target for the Bucs with the No. 9 overall pick in next week's draft.
"He doesn't have great height, doesn't have great length," Kiper said Tuesday in a teleconference with reporters. He only ran a 4.5 40 (-yard dash). But he's a tough kid. He supports the run. He tackles well. He does a decent job in coverage, not a great job..."
Kiper said Hargreaves was beaten on a few deep balls in pass coverage. The 5-foot-10, 205-pound prospect bites on plays and doesn't have the ability to recover quickly enough.
Although Kiper said he likes Hargreaves' experience and confidence, he doesn't believe he can be a lead cornerback for an NFL team.
"I think he's a No. 2 corner," Kiper said. "I don't think he can be a lockdown corner. I don't think he's a guy you want on the best receiver on the opposition all the time, but I think he's a good football player."
A few other draft notes from ESPN's teleconference with Kiper and his colleague, Todd McShay:
* McShay said he thinks Florida State DB Jalen Ramsey "fits today's league" with his versatility, but he questions whether Ramsey's ball skills warrant a top-three pick. Ramsey had only three interceptions in his three seasons at FSU and none in 2015.
"He dropped a lot of balls that he should intercept," McShay said. "If you're going to spend a pick in the top there, the top four, it's hard to swallow if you're not going to get a guy who's going to turn the ball over."
* McShay said Florida S Keanu Neal - a potential first-round pick - is strong at stopping the run but has limitations in pass coverage. "But he's a heck of a football player," McShay said.
* Kiper thinks Miami CB Artie Burns could sneak into the first round. "He's got length," Kiper said. "He's got tremendous recovery ability."
* FSU K Roberto Aguayo should go in the third, fourth or fifth round, Kiper said.