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Carolina Panthers Draft Focus: Kevin White vs Senquez Golson

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TCU's Kevin White, and Mississippi's Senquez Golson are two undersized, mid-round cornerback prospects. Which might be the best choice if the Panthers decide to take a cornerback in the third or fourth round?

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Kevin White, CB, TCU

Kevin was a three-plus year starter at TCU and capped off his senior season with 51 total tackles, 2 interceptions and 11 pass breakups. White is one of three TCU defensive backs that are draft eligible. Won the Senior Bowl Practice Award for the defensive backs.

Stats:

2011: started three games after his redshirt 2010 season.

2012: started 12 of 13 games, with 37 tackles, one interception, and eight pass breakups.

2013: started all 12 games, with 40 tackles, 3 ints, 8 pass breakups, and 3 fumble recoveries

2014: started all 12 games, with 51 tackles, 4 TFL, 2 ints, 11 pass breakups

NFL.com profile:

"has temperament of an outsider corner, but lacks size and deep speed...struggles to stay with smaller, quick darting receivers..."

Mike Mayock on White (during Senior Bowl week):

"I thought her did an outstanding job in man-to-man coverage.  Everything I saw on tape, he's very similar to Jason Verrett, the first-round pick from last year."

My take:

A lot closer to Verrett than most are giving him credit for, White is a fluid, easy mover, who is able to flip his hips and provide "sticky" coverage.  Like all TCU players, he disappointed during the NFL Combine, but I expect he will run again, and faster at TCU's pro day and regain some of the momentum he lost after a strong Senior Bowl week.

In my film study, I never saw Verrett line-up in the slot. Normally that task was left to a safety in TCU's 4-2-5 base.

Tale of the Tape 1

Category White Golson
Height 5' 9 1/8" 5' 8 5/8"
Weight 183 176
Arm Length 30 1/8" 29 3/4"
Hand Size 8 3/8" 8 3/8"
40 Yard Dash 4.63 4.46
Bench Press 18 15
Vertical Jump 35 1/2" 33 1/2"
Broad Jump 10' 1" 10' 1"
3 Cone Drill N/A 6.81
20 Yard Shuttle N/A 4.20
Agility Score N/A 11.01

Senquez Golson, CB, Ole Miss

A unanimous first-team All-American as a Senior after he was second in the nation with ten interceptions (lead all CBs). A three plus year starer, and a big part of the Rebels "landshark" defense.

Selected in the eighth round of the 2011 MLB Draft by Boston as a center fielder. Made 15 starts for the Rebels' baseball team in 2012.

Stats:

2011: Played in 12 games with four starts at cornerback. 16 total stops and had an interception.

2012: Played in 12 games with six starts at cornerback. 36 tackles, 3 ints, and 6 passes defended.

2013: Played in 12 games with 10 starts, 41 tackles, 2.5 TFLs, 2 ints, and 3 pass breakups.

2014: 13 starts, 43 tackles, with 3 TFL, 10 interceptions, and 8 additional pass breakups.

NFL.com profile:

Goldon has the twitch, ball skills, and instincts to be an outstanding cornerback in the NFL.

Mike Mayock on Golson:

Mayock said that Golson "tracks the ball as well as anyone I have ever seen."

My take:

Interceptions can be a bit "fluky", but certainly Golson's ability to track the ball has carried over from the baseball diamond to the gridiron.   Many times Golson was allowed to freelance in college, and will need to be more disciplined in the NFL.

A bigger concern is his size (NFL.com states of the four touchdowns Golson gave up in 2014, three were to players listed at 6'4 or taller) will probably limit him to playing the nickel position, which has essentially a starter with so many three and four receiver sets.

My vote:

If the Panthers decided to take a corner, I have White slightly ahead of Golson.  What are your thoughts?