clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

2018 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Is Isaiah Oliver the best corner in this class?

New, comments

One draft prospect analyst certainly thinks he is.

NCAA Football: Arizona State at Colorado Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Isaiah Oliver, CB, Colorado

Measurables

6’0”, 201 lbs

40-yd Dash: 4.50 seconds

Stats

2017: 26 Tackles, 2 Interceptions, 12 Passes Defended

2016: 34 Tackles, 1 Interception, 7 Passes Defended

2015: 22 Tackles, 0 Interceptions, 6 Passes Defended

Awards

2017 Second-Team All-American

2017 First-Team All-Pac 12

Strengths

Isaiah Oliver’s biggest asset is his ridiculous length. He has the longest arms (33 12 - inches) of any cornerback in this class, and in the last 20 years only 6 corner prospects have measured longer. Oliver takes full advantage of this as he takes away the catch radius of receivers making it difficult for them to win in jump-ball situations.

Because of his length, he should have a lot of success in the NFL as a press corner as he has such a long reach and will be able to deliver a strong punch. His size will help him matchup nicely with bigger receivers such as Alshon Jeffery and A.J. Green.

Oliver does a nice job of staying on the hip of receivers and pinning them against the sideline. Once he’s in this position, he can feel where they are and then turn his head to locate the ball and make a play on it.

Weaknesses

While his speed and agility are impressive for his size, larger cornerbacks such as Oliver often struggle playing off-man or zone when facing quick receivers that can break off their routes quickly. Whichever team drafts the Colorado defensive back can mask this by playing him in a press scheme where he can throw off the routes of opposing receivers.

Right now, Oliver doesn’t use his arms and hands nearly enough when playing in press. He needs to become more violent with them as they will be his biggest weapon against opponents. This is teachable and I would expect it to change in the NFL.

Verdict

In a league where tall cornerbacks are coveted, there’s a chance Oliver will be the first cornerback selected in the 2018 NFL Draft. His length and athleticism should translate well as a press corner at the next level. Oliver also uses his frame well as a tackler and isn’t afraid of contact.

Pro Comparison

Aqib Talib

Fit with Raiders

It is no secret that Reggie McKenzie loves big cornerbacks. Maybe this will change under Jon Gruden and Paul Guenther, but based on the heavy man coverage schemes Guenther likes to run I could see them targeting Oliver.

Adding him as a boundary cornerback along with Gareon Conley and Rashaan Melvin would give the Silver and Black three large press corners that are all capable of smothering receivers.

For another great look at Isaiah Oliver, SB Nation’s Brett Kollmann is one of the best in the business at breaking down prospects.