Justin Gilbert CB Oklahoma State #4
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Size/Athleticism: Adequate height and bulk. A very fluid natural athlete. Has experience returning kicks and will likely play a role on special teams early in his career.
Coverage: Great natural athleticism and excels in man coverage. Very smooth and fluid in his backpedal and has the quick hips to turn and run with receivers. Has the straight-line speed to stay with just about any receiver. Not very physical with receivers, but has exceptionally quick feet which allows him to play up at the line of scrimmage and mirror receivers right off the snap, without needing to get physical to slow them down. Inconsistent in terms of reading the quarterback in zone coverage. Lets a lot of underneath throws go uncontested due to late reactions.
Ball skills: Poor awareness on the field. He can mirror his receiver, but he doesn’t react to the ball. Allows a lot of receptions, even in tight coverage because he fails to react and play the ball. Can come down with the interception when he’s in position, but he does see the ball often enough.
Run support: Elite closing speed. Somewhat hesitant to help out, but will make plays when he has to.
Intangibles: Displayed lack of effort early in career which he has admitted, and didn’t fully get along with coaches. Matured late in career, but lack of fundamentals was still apparent.
Durability: No known issues.
Comments: Gilbert is among the most talent defensive backs in this class, but it didn’t always translate to success in college. He tried to win with pure athleticism too often, and savvy receiver/quarterback duos took advantage of him. He has legitimate star potential, but it will require commitment on his part to master the fundamentals to reach that level.