|Aaron Williams CB Texas|
|Impressive size for a corner. Above average strength. A physical player that isn’t afraid to mix it up with receivers at the line of scrimmage. Fearless in man coverage; willing to play close to the line of scrimmage and trusts his ability to match up his speed/strength with any receiver.|
|Overaggressive. Makes too many mistakes because he trusts his raw ability too much. Doesn’t have great instincts; bites on fakes and gets beat easily by effective route runners. Below average tackler; mostly because of a lack of effort.|
|Williams has the skills to be a starter at the next level, but his game needs work. He’s capable of playing immediately, but he’ll get beat from time to time. If he puts in the effort he could develop into an above-average starter, but he’s more of a project than you’d like from a 1st-round pick. He could come off the board in the first 32 picks, but I would prefer to wait until the 2nd round.|
When asked about the Ravens interest in cornerbacks director of player personnel Eric DeCosta stated: “Smaller corners typically will have a disadvantage going against bigger receivers. If you can get bigger, those guys can be a little more durable and physical. There aren’t many of those guys out there. If you do, you get a guy like Champ Bailey or Chris McAlister or Charles Woodson.”
If they’re targeting that position in the 1st round, that means they’re probably limiting themselves to Aaron Williams and Jimmy Smith. The only other corner widely regarded as a 1st-round pick would be Brandon Harris, who is significantly smaller and doesn’t play a physical brand of football.
One sleeper option could be New Mexico State’s Davon House. At 6’1″, 200 pounds he certainly fits the mold of what they’re looking for, but he’ll need to prove he has the speed and athleticism to make a significant leap from the WAC to the NFL.
At the moment, defensive line looks like their most pressing need. However, that could all change if Champ Bailey decides to leave once free agency opens (if it ever does).
If we ever get to the point where teams are allowed to negotiate with free agents, Bailey would certainly have good reasons to leave Denver. He’ll be 33 in June and has won just one playoff game in his seven years with the Broncos. If he wants to chase a championship, Denver probably isn’t the place to do that.
Bailey’s departure would leave the Broncos with journeyman Andre Goodman and troubled rookie Parrish Cox as their starting cornerbacks. Cox, however, may not even be available for all or part of the 2011 season and beyond, depending on the outcome of his arrest for sexual assault.
Given these potential departures from the Broncos secondary, Patrick Peterson may start to look like the most attractive option in the draft. He compares favorably to Bailey, and is one of the most talented corners to enter the draft in a number of years.
The Broncos may also be swayed toward Peterson due to the depth in this year’s defensive line class. The difference in talent between Peterson and potential early 2nd-round options (Brandon Harris, Aaron Williams) is far greater than the difference between Fairley/Bowers and a player such as Cameron Heyward, who may still be available with the 36th pick.