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 CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42 
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Post CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/nfl- ... zles-in-40

I gotta say, I'm warming up to him in a hurry as a Sammy Watkins contingency plan.

Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard, NFLDraftScout.com's top-ranked cornerback, posted a surprising 4.42, likely cementing a spot in the top 15 in Tuesday's mornings defensive back workouts at the NFL Scouting Combine.

Dennard's game tape was enough to win over coaches and evaluators. The blazing unofficial time to open the final days of workouts at Lucas Oil Stadium pushes him over the top.

Oklahoma State's Justin Gilbert (4.35 unofficially) will battle to be the first cornerback off the board, but scouts aren't all convinced Gilbert's athleticism translates to the field. Undoubtedly he's the most naturally gifted athlete. He had seven interceptions last season and with his size (6-0, 202) and arms, projects as a No. 1 cornerback.

It was thought Dennard's time might be closer to Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden at 4.6 -- that didn't disqualify Haden from being a first-round pick. It turns out he is closer to Dee Milliner's test results. Milliner, the top-ranked cornerback out of Alabama in 2013, was 13th overall after posting two stunning unofficial times under 4.4 (4.31, 4.37).

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (4.52 unofficial) also confirmed NFLDraftScout.com's evaluation as the top-ranked safety in the class. Louisville's Calvin Pryor works out Tuesday afternoon in the second DB group.

Dennard was Mr. Consistency for the Spartans, and he plays with the pure dynamism and animated, infectious spirit coaches and teammates appreciate and admire. Other than perhaps wildcard Virginia Tech corner Kyle Fuller (who timed unofficially in a surprising 4.4 flat), Dennard is the best football player -- instincts, awareness and intelligence -- at the position.

"I think he's a pretty good corner," said Ohio State's Bradley Roby.

Dennard needs an ideal scheme fit, a team that presses at the line to physically jam and re-route receivers, or his shot at stardom is nil. He is not a superb or rare athlete and could be overlooked. There are also questions about durability including shoulder and head injuries.


Last edited by yostevo on February 25th, 2014, 2:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.



February 25th, 2014, 1:15 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.43
Great prospect, but Gilbert looks to be more scheme flexible and is the longer better athlete. If the Lions are going 1st RD CB then I would like them to take Gilbert. There is also a guy like Keith Mcgill they can look at in the 2nd-3rd RD.


February 25th, 2014, 1:39 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.43
Agreed, I have Gilbert ranked ahead of Dennard if the Lions take a CB at 10. But my Spartan brother just made some more $ with that 40.

As for the "Sammy Watkins contingency plan", that looks to be pretty much a sure thing now so don't get your hopes up.

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February 25th, 2014, 1:47 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.43
Gilbert reminds me more of a Jimmy Smith type of player. He may physically challenge receivers at the point of reception but I don't see the fluidity in his back peddle and stickiness that Dennard presents.

Dennard is also said to be a lockeroom favorite and an energy guy. A natural fit to replace what Delmas may have been giving.

He's on top in my book.


February 25th, 2014, 2:14 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.43
yostevo wrote:
Gilbert reminds me more of a Jimmy Smith type of player. He may physically challenge receivers at the point of reception but I don't see the fluidity in his back peddle and stickiness that Dennard presents.

Dennard is also said to be a lockeroom favorite and an energy guy. A natural fit to replace what Delmas may have been giving.

He's on top in my book.


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February 25th, 2014, 9:03 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
Dennard looked stiff in the hips, and his actual 40 time was adjusted to 4.51. Whereas Gilbert is bigger, faster (4.37) and smoother, has better ball skills, is a play-maker with return ability. Looks like a no-brainer to me.


February 25th, 2014, 9:25 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
Id be okay with Gilbert, but I wanna see our young corners one more year, especially with Teryl Austin as DC. I personally would rather they go WR at 10.

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February 25th, 2014, 9:30 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.43
yostevo wrote:
Gilbert reminds me more of a Jimmy Smith type of player. He may physically challenge receivers at the point of reception but I don't see the fluidity in his back peddle and stickiness that Dennard presents.

Dennard is also said to be a lockeroom favorite and an energy guy. A natural fit to replace what Delmas may have been giving.

He's on top in my book.


My concern with Dennard over Gilbert is the large WRs the Lions see in their division. Dennard has short arms and his game relies on press man coverage. I'm not sold on him being as dominate against the NFL level big WRs as he was in college. Gilbert has an inch in height and 3 extra inches in arm length to help when meeting up with opposing WRs at the line. Gilbert even put up more reps on the bench with those longer arms and lankier build. I think Gilbert is just as sticky in man coverage as Dennard and has shown a better explosion when closing on a pass. Gilbert also adds the ability to return Kicks into his value.


February 25th, 2014, 9:35 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
liontrax wrote:
Dennard looked stiff in the hips, and his actual 40 time was adjusted to 4.51. Whereas Gilbert is bigger, faster (4.37) and smoother, has better ball skills, is a play-maker with return ability. Looks like a no-brainer to me.

I dunno man, outside of Gilbert's return ability(which is deadly) he looks an awful lot like Darius Slay In coverage. Teams love throwing screens to his side and making him try to tackle. Ya he has an inch on Dennard but I don't think that means he'll have more success vs Jordy Nelson, Brandon Marshall, or Cordarrell Patterson. I don't think we should take him under the pretense that he'll stop more jump balls.

Dennard is a very physical CB similar to Joe Haden or Courtland Finnigan(slightly taller than both with better hands as well). I think his ball skills are underrated as is his ability after the pick. He is an excellent tackler and would come onto the team already as the best tackler in our secondary in a division which boasts AP, Forte, and Lacy. He is not a combine killer, he lines up across from WRs and abuses them. Who do you think has a better shot at locking up those WRs long enough for the pass rush to reach, Dennard or Gilbert? Which guy would do a better job as a blitzing corner? Gilbert is flashy and fast as hell but give me the tougher player any day especially in the NFC north.
Dennard will have a hard time adjusting to the speed and softness of the NFL game however. He holds and grabs a ton but he has Antoine Winfield hitting potential.

I do think Gilbert will be good for someone but I don't want another Darius Slay experiment and Dennard looks taylor made for what the Ravens look for in CBs which is why I think he will be the pick for Teryl Austin's defense plus he played locally.

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February 25th, 2014, 10:58 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
Killwill25 wrote:
liontrax wrote:
Dennard looked stiff in the hips, and his actual 40 time was adjusted to 4.51. Whereas Gilbert is bigger, faster (4.37) and smoother, has better ball skills, is a play-maker with return ability. Looks like a no-brainer to me.

I dunno man, outside of Gilbert's return ability(which is deadly) he looks an awful lot like Darius Slay In coverage. Teams love throwing screens to his side and making him try to tackle. Ya he has an inch on Dennard but I don't think that means he'll have more success vs Jordy Nelson, Brandon Marshall, or Cordarrell Patterson. I don't think we should take him under the pretense that he'll stop more jump balls.

Dennard is a very physical CB similar to Joe Haden or Courtland Finnigan(slightly taller than both with better hands as well). I think his ball skills are underrated as is his ability after the pick. He is an excellent tackler and would come onto the team already as the best tackler in our secondary in a division which boasts AP, Forte, and Lacy. He is not a combine killer, he lines up across from WRs and abuses them. Who do you think has a better shot at locking up those WRs long enough for the pass rush to reach, Dennard or Gilbert? Which guy would do a better job as a blitzing corner? Gilbert is flashy and fast as hell but give me the tougher player any day especially in the NFC north.
Dennard will have a hard time adjusting to the speed and softness of the NFL game however. He holds and grabs a ton but he has Antoine Winfield hitting potential.

I do think Gilbert will be good for someone but I don't want another Darius Slay experiment and Dennard looks taylor made for what the Ravens look for in CBs which is why I think he will be the pick for Teryl Austin's defense plus he played locally.

And I hate MSU



Well, I'm a huge State fan, but that has no bearing whatsoever when it comes to drafting talent for the Lions. Don't get me wrong, Dennard is a tough kid and I hope he does well in the league. But if I'm drafting for the Lions I want the player that brings the most ability to the table to begin with, and has the most upside because none of these kids are a finished product. I see Gilbert as the one between the two with the most potential to be a #1 CB. Hey, that's just me. I might be dead wrong and would happily admit it if Dennard turns out to be the better Pro.
Heck, for all we know the Lions won't consider a CB in the 1st, going WR no matter what. Or are perfectly happy with the young corners they already have.


February 25th, 2014, 11:43 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
Denard is a 3-4 blitz. CB. He will be a really good Steeler. Probablynot so much as a Lion.


February 26th, 2014, 1:20 am
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
Killwill25 wrote:
liontrax wrote:
Dennard looked stiff in the hips, and his actual 40 time was adjusted to 4.51. Whereas Gilbert is bigger, faster (4.37) and smoother, has better ball skills, is a play-maker with return ability. Looks like a no-brainer to me.

I dunno man, outside of Gilbert's return ability(which is deadly) he looks an awful lot like Darius Slay In coverage. Teams love throwing screens to his side and making him try to tackle. Ya he has an inch on Dennard but I don't think that means he'll have more success vs Jordy Nelson, Brandon Marshall, or Cordarrell Patterson. I don't think we should take him under the pretense that he'll stop more jump balls.

Dennard is a very physical CB similar to Joe Haden or Courtland Finnigan(slightly taller than both with better hands as well). I think his ball skills are underrated as is his ability after the pick. He is an excellent tackler and would come onto the team already as the best tackler in our secondary in a division which boasts AP, Forte, and Lacy. He is not a combine killer, he lines up across from WRs and abuses them. Who do you think has a better shot at locking up those WRs long enough for the pass rush to reach, Dennard or Gilbert? Which guy would do a better job as a blitzing corner? Gilbert is flashy and fast as hell but give me the tougher player any day especially in the NFC north.
Dennard will have a hard time adjusting to the speed and softness of the NFL game however. He holds and grabs a ton but he has Antoine Winfield hitting potential.

I do think Gilbert will be good for someone but I don't want another Darius Slay experiment and Dennard looks taylor made for what the Ravens look for in CBs which is why I think he will be the pick for Teryl Austin's defense plus he played locally.

Well said and I agree with all of it.


February 26th, 2014, 9:33 am
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
I will concede that Gilbert made more flash plays and the return ability is a plus. I just feel that Dennard's game translates better and is much less of a concern of a swing and miss pick.


February 26th, 2014, 9:35 am
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
Hasn't Dennard also only had one healthy season? I know he's had sports hernia issues in the past, but I believe he's had other injuries too.


February 26th, 2014, 12:17 pm
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Post Re: CB Darqueze Dennard runs a 4.42
I'd put Verrett and Kyle Fuller right there with Dennard and Gilbert. Gilbert probably has the highest ceiling of all of them so I see why people look at him at the top.

Lot of talk about WR depth in this draft, CB depth is pretty damn good, too.


February 26th, 2014, 4:13 pm
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