NFL Draft Pick No 10: New York Jets – Derek Stingley, Cornerback, LSU
The Jets went on a spending spree on cornerback to grab former 49ers player D.J. Reed and fellow corner Jordan Whitehead. Both are excellent players, but Whitehead is more of a slot receiver, so the team needs someone next to Reed on the outside.
Derek Stingley was once considered a certainly to be the first cornerback off the board and a potential top-five pick, but injuries and the emergence of other corners have put a damper on his draft stock as of late.
However, a strong performance in the predraft process has helped arrest his falling stock somewhat, and he could still be a top-10 pick and is fighting Ahmad Gardner to be the first cornerback off the board.
Film-wise, Stingley can be seen as a one-season wonder with his freshman season one for the ages. Stingley shut down one side of the field for LSU all season and had six interceptions and 15 passes defended. He was the very epitome of a shutdown corner.
Unfortunately, COVID-19 disruptions to the season and then injuries played a role in his final two years not being as impressive, but Stingley already showed the sort of elite player he can be in the secondary.
If Stingley played his final two seasons like he did his freshman year then Stingley would be a rare cornerback who could be considered for the top pick. Stingley is one of my favorite prospects in the draft and he has no weaknesses with the ability to play in any coverage system, impressive ball skills, football smarts, a good size (6-foot-1, 195 pounds) to play on receivers, excellent speed and a force in run defense also.
There’s a lot to love about Stingley, the only question mark is whether or not he’s merely a one-season wonder or just unlucky.