One year ago we selected a cornerback with our first round selection, and despite Dee Milliner having his ups and mostly downs during the season, the Jets remain high on the young Alabama prospect. It's likely the Jets will let Cromartie go and then try and re-sign him to a more cap friendly contract, however that is by no means a foregone conclusion. We do still have Kyle Wilson, but I think most agree he is better inside. So although very unlikely the Jets will select a corner early, you just never know. So it's always worth covering these guys just in case.
Six kickoff returns over his college career and a Big 12 leading 7 interceptions in 2012, Gilbert is a playmaker, both as a defender but also with the ball in his hands. Although it hasn't always been plane sailing for Gilbert, he has been terrific in 2013 and now he is rightfully considered one of the top prospects ahead of the 2014 NFL draft. Likely a first round talent, it's going to be interesting to see where he lands. Could it be with the Jets?
Combine 40: 4.37
225 Bench: 20 reps
Vertical: 35 1/2
3 Cone: 6.92
*Touchdowns are interceptions returned only. All stats taken from ESPN*
|Year||Tackles||Sacks||Forced Fumbles||Interceptions||Passes Defensed||TD's|
- Height/Weight/Speed - Gilbert is the prototypical defensive back, he has good height, with good bulk, long arms and above average speed for the position.
- Change of Direction - One of his key traits is his ability to flip his hips without losing momentum and close on the ball carrier quickly.
- Vision - Possesses a natural feel for the game, keeps his eyes on his receiver while peeking at the QB to get a good read on where the ball will be going.
- Fluidity: This goes hand in hand with the change of direction but he is smooth in his backpedal and is fast to either flip the hips to run in coverage, or plant the foot to explode on the receiver or ball carrier.
- Press-Man - A lot of corners who come into the league struggle when asked to play in press coverage. Gilbert relishes press coverage and is happy to mix it up at the line.
- Playmaking instincts - If you look at the interception numbers, it tells you he has good hands and a good nose for the football. He breaks crisply and his closing speed baits quarterbacks into believing they have the time to fit it through.
- Physicality - Likes to play and mix it up with bigger receivers. Has a good vertical that allows him to contest jump balls and possesses a lot of upper body strength that allows him to come down with a lot of them.
- Leverage - Uses his long arms in coverage but also when getting off blocks to set the edge in the run game. I was actually very impressed with his ability to rip off his blocks.
- Risk-taker - Most ball hawks will come with a reputation as a risk-taker it's how they come down with their picks a lot of the time. However when it doesn't work, they look bad. Sometimes Gilbert is made to look bad as he will jump on a pump fake and will be beat on the double-move. Saw it several times in games from 2013, 2012 and 2011.
- Concentration - What happened in 2012? who knows. Some say he got complacent. Gilbert does sometimes lose concentration, which allows players to gain leverage and separation. Luckily for him he has excellent closing speed and recovery speed.
- Too physical? - If you watch any Oklahoma State game, you'll see Gilbert making contact down the field. It's another area that corners struggle with. A lot of downfield contact won't get called in NCAA ball, but it definitely will in the NFL. So it's just something to watch out for with Gilbert.
- Tackling in space - One thing I'd want to reaffirm to Gilbert every day in camp, go in low. Sometimes he comes in to tackle too high, and with stronger receivers and tight ends in the NFL, he could be experiencing a lot of stiff-arms.