With the Draft fast approaching, it's time to start looking at some potential players for the Patriots. I'm going to put profiles of 2 players a day- one offense, one defensive- and gain a better understanding of the players in the draft.
Boise State's Kyle Wilson is often regarded as the second best cornerback available in this draft. It's highly unlikely that he falls past the Houston Texans at #20, but if he does, Wilson is a player that MUST be considered. With the recent arms race that's occurring in the AFC East, any upgrades to our secondary must be checked out. Most people would argue that a good pass rush can make an average secondary look good- it can also work the other way around. To a certain extent. Wilson has had success at the college level and has been starting since his freshman year. He put up quality numbers, despite the fact that teams avoided throwing the ball towards him. He can block the ball, he can intercept the ball and he can help out by returning the ball on special teams. I see Wilson as a player of similar quality to Darius Butler- a player who could sit out, or play nickel, his rookie year and then explode and be a starter for the rest of his career.
His measurements and some quotes after the jump.
Height: 5-10. Weight: 185.
Projected 40 Time: 4.44.
Pro Day 40 Time: 4.43.
Benchx225: 25. Vertical: 38.
Player Comparison: Cortland Finnegan. Finnegan is a very confident player who is highly athletic and finds ways to make plays. He's a good press man corner like Wilson.
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03/26/2010 - Former Boise State cornerback Kyle Wilson unofficially ran the 40-yard dash in 4.42 seconds Friday at the Broncos' pro day. That's slightly slower than Wilson expected, but plenty fast enough to keep him in line for a first-round selection in the NFL Draft. He also posted a 38-inch vertical jump, a personal best. The scouts do their own timing, so there is some variety in the numbers. Wilson's two 40-yard-dash attempts were timed in as fast as 4.39 seconds and as slow as 4.47 seconds, according to different scouts and reports. Wilson ran the 40 in 4.36 and 4.39 seconds last spring. "I was happy how everything went," said Wilson, who is expected to land in the second half of the first round of the NFL Draft. "... I know I'm as fast as they come, so hey, I'll trust my speed vs. anybody." The top 40-yard dash by a cornerback at the NFL Scouting Combine was 4.45 seconds. Six players had vertical jumps better than 38 inches, topped by a 44-inch leap by Fresno State's A.J. Jefferson. Wilson said the hamstring injury that prevented him from running and jumping at the combine was not an issue Friday. "I don't have any excuses," he said. "I trained hard, I was ready to go and I came out here and did my best." Wilson's other results included 10 feet, 2 inches in the broad jump, 6.74 seconds in the three-cone drill, 4.02 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle and 11.4 seconds in the 60-yard shuttle. The best of those numbers is in the 20-yard shuttle, where Wilson would have ranked second at the combine. He would have tied for sixth in the three-cone drill. The usual collection of NFL scouts was augmented by at least a handful of NFL defensive coordinators. Forty-one scouts and coaches attended the event, representing nearly 20 teams. About seven coaches were in attendance, including at least two defensive coordinators. - Chadd Cripe, The Idaho Statesman
03/19/2010 - TOP RATED NFL DRAFT SCOUT CORNERBACKS: Kyle Wilson, Boise State, 5-10, 194, 1-2: He was consistent enough to earn all-conference or All-America awards in all four seasons, impressing as a defensive back and a punt returner. He didn't run at the combine because of a pulled hamstring but showed impressive strength, bench-pressing 225 pounds 25 times. He made a positive impression at the Senior Bowl by invigorating workouts with trash talk, then backing it up by disrupting passes and wide receivers. He is extremely competitive, tough and has great ball reaction. Led his Piscataway, N.J., high school team to three state championships, including two undefeated seasons (2002, '04). - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange, NFLDraftScout.com/CBS Sports/USA TODAY
Wilson is an athletic versatile player that has immediate value giving depth to the secondary as well as contributing as a return specialist. He is aggressive to go after the ball as a coverage defender as well as fielding punts and kicks. Wilson understands angles and how to leverage the ball that may fit best in combination zone schemes. He shows good vision and instincts to find a crease as a punt returner. Wilson lacks great top end speed but shows excellent quickness and hips to be effective as a nickel defender. He is a willing run support player but isn’t physical and needs to improve in this phase of the game. Wilson is a good football player that should contribute in a rookie season and eventually vie for a starting position.
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Verdict: I think taking Wilson, should he be available at #22, would be more of a luxury pick than the Patriots have room for. While he is clearly one of the best players in the draft, the Patriots need to fix their pass rush prior to upgrading their secondary. Who knows- maybe Wheatley and Wilhite can re-emerge with a capable pass rush! I'd pass on Wilson in the first to address our pass rush.