Johnthan Banks CB Mississippi State #13
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Size/Athleticism: Impressive height with a decent vertical to go with it. Speed is very average, but he’s quick in short bursts.
Coverage: Ideal matchup in man coverage against taller possession receivers. He lacks the strength to battle with some of the more physical receivers in press coverage, but his height will create interesting battles between him and some of the taller receivers in the league. Because he’s so tall, he lacks the quickness to stay with shorter receivers. His footwork is a step slower and he bites on too many fakes. A smaller outside receiver such as Mike Wallace will toy with him at the next level, and those matchups should be avoided at all costs. Lacks awareness at times. Struggles to stay with receiver while trying to spy on the quarterback and will lose his man or take a step i the wrong direction.
Ball skills: Height allows him cause trouble for receivers, but he is inconsistent in his ability to put himself in position to make plays. His poor footwork and lack of agility often makes him a step late. While his height allows him to go up with taller receivers, he’s extremely skinny and can easily be boxed out.
Run support: Willing to step up but doesn’t always take the best angles. Struggles to shed blocks. He gives a solid effort, but he just lacks the upper body strength to fight his way out of a good block. Occasionally used to blitz, but if he doesn’t have a clear path to the quarterback or ball carrier, he’s unable to fight through traffic to make a play. Tackling technique is shaky; he swipes at the ball carrier’s legs far too often and doesn’t step up with a form tackle.
Intangibles: Experience at corner and free safety.
Durability: Missed the Senior Bowl with a knee injury which bothered him for most of the season.
Comments: It’s easy to be intrigued by Banks’ height, but how will it benefit him? For a corner as skinny as Banks, height may actually be a hindrance. Like all tall corners, banks lacks the quick footwork and fluid hips to hand with the game’s shorter, quicker receivers. But unlike other tall corners such as Richard Sherman, Banks also lacks the bulk to fight with the more physical receivers in the league. He’s a boom-or-bust prospect who could develop into the next Sherman, or he could simply be a ‘tweener who can’t find a role in the league.