Florida junior C.J. Henderson has gone from a potential first-round pick who needs to improve his tackling to the likely second or third cornerback selected and a virtual lock for the first round.
And while he still gets nicked in various scouting reports for his tackling, his Combine performance simply underscored just how athletic Henderson is.
Translation: Teams can live with his suspect tackling, but you can’t teach those other intangibles.
In fact, only Ohio State’s Jeffrey Okudah’s measurements were more impressive than Henderson’s.
— NFL (@NFL) March 2, 2020
Pro Football Focus is particularly high on Henderson, ranking him as the third-best CB behind Okudah and LSU’s Kristian Fulton.
According to PFF, Henderson allowed just 18 receptions – no touchdowns – in 365 coverage snaps as a sophomore in 2018. He was only targeted 36 times this past season, but he also gave up five catches that went for 40 yards or more in just nine games.
“After Okudah, Henderson has the best man cover corner traits in this class,” writes PFF’s Mike Renner. “He’s just such a smooth, gifted athlete that he can stick in the hip pocket of even the shiftiest of wide outs.”
However, PFF explains, that same elite athleticism is also what got Henderson in trouble at times in the 2019 season.
“It’s rare to see him play with any sort of physicality along the route and it led to some big plays in 2019. … Some (long receptions) were mental lapses, but his passiveness hurt him on others.”
Henderson is currently the No. 17 overall prospect – and No. 2 CB – in the latest Fanspeak-Steve big board.