Following the 2008 season, the Cardinals overhauled their secondary, particularly at cornerback. Starters Rod Hood and Eric Green both exited the desert after Arizona struggled to consistently defend the pass, allowing 221 yards per game through the air. Thanks to a promising rookie campaign, Rodgers-Cromartie then landed on top of the depth chart and McFadden joined him. However, the Cardinals' pass defense proceeded to take a step back giving up over 230 yards passing per contest.
Jackson, McCourty and Robinson all share similar skill sets and their abilities aren't far off of the top two cornerbacks available. Jackson features fluid hips and excellent footwork, two of the most important traits of a corner in the NFL. He displays a physical presence in one-on-one situations and has the ability to jam receivers off the line of scrimmage. Additionally, Jackson was a three-year starter for the Crimson Tide and his lack of injuries in college makes him a relatively safe investment.
McCourty is another durable player who missed very little time during his four-year career with the Scarlett Knights. While he lacks the natural abilities players such as Haden, Wilson and Robinson possess, McCourty boasts a great deal of experience and is outstanding in run defense. Meanwhile in comparison, Robinson's potential is slightly limited and he may fit better in a cover two scheme. Robinson has tremendous ball skills but may struggle to match-up consistently with NFL receivers.
Last year's draft transpired in ideal fashion for Arizona as RB Beanie Wells dropped all the way to pick No. 31. If the Cardinals manage to be as fortunate as they were a year ago, GM Rod Graves may have a tough time passing on a cornerback in Round 1 thanks to a stellar group of prospects expected to be available.
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