Has good size and speed. Has good hips and does a good job running with receivers. Keeps things in front of him and doesn't give up big yardage after the catch because he's rarely caught out of position to at least not make the tackle. Seems to relish his run support duties, showing natural feel there, able to set the edge and make plays behind the line of scrimmage. Consistently breaks down in space and will make stops in the open field. Flashes burst off the corner to be a factor as a blitzer. Physical guy that does a good job in press coverage. Has nice ball skills. Tracks the deep ball well and locates the ball in the air. Has good closing burst on the crossing routes, able to undercut the play and will break up the slant. Keeps working until the whistle blows even when he makes a mistake.
Doesn't always play with discipline. Has a tendency to draw some flags. Can get caught looking in the backfield and get turned around in coverage. Needs to improve his footwork and technique. Can get in trouble when he doesn't get the jam, and doesn't consistently get it. Not a consistent wrap tackler, lowering the shoulder and/or tackling a bit too high at times, leading to some missed stops in the open field.
Amukamara has top-level skills. His size, speed, and athleticism means that he has elite corner potential because he can match up with almost anyone, but he's not as consistent as you'd like or show the playmaking ability to love him. I saw four Nebraska games this year, and he was flagged in three of the them. Once for riding a receiver out of bounds on a deep pattern, again for holding when he missed a jam, and a third time for going through the wideout to try and break up a pass. That is concerning to me that he may not have quite the discipline to be an elite shutdown corner. Did not have a pick this year, although did have 13 breakups. Following a junior campaign where he had 5 picks and 11 breakups. He also combined for 123 tackles, 4 for loss, and 3 sacks the past two years as a full-time starter. Last name is pronounced: "Ah-moo-kuh-mare-uh."
Amukamara is a hard-worker and coachable because of his effort and his ability to play his assignments well. He reminds me a lot of Nnamdi Asomugha in terms of his NFL potential. Asomugha is a big, fast, press corner that doesn't make a ton of plays, but is such a good matchup guy that teams stay away from him, so he doesn't really have to. I think evenutally, that's the type of corner that Amukamara can be. He's a guy that probably won't have a bunch of picks, but can break up passes and be good in coverage to limit opportunities for opposing No. 1s. He has some potential to play safety beacuse of how solid a run stopper he is, reminding me of a Malcolm Jenkins. But he's faster than Jenkins was, and may not have as great a feel for playing in space and in zone coverage. But he has the sort of size, speed, and ball skills that if for some reason he struggles at cornerback early in his career, he should make a very good safety. But I don't see him going through the issues that Jenkins did early on, and prompting such a move. He might struggle at times early, particularly if he doesn't play with more discipline and better technique, leading to penalties and him getting beat. I think he'll develop into one of the premier corners in the league, but I'm not quite convinced he's going to be an elite guy like as Asomugha, at least not early in his career. He has all the tools to be that type of player, but I'm not 100% sold. But again because of his high character and toughness, he'll be good, and certainly a No. 1 corner.
Amukamara has the athleticism to play in the slot, but wasn't really asked to do so at Nebraska, playing in a scheme that basically stuck him on the left side of the field almost every snap. That fits with what the Falcons do now. He would definitely be a much better option than anybody the Falcons currently have, so he'd be at least a step in the right direction even if he doesn't shine there. His size and ability in press coverage makes him a nice match opposite Robinson, who is a similar player. I think both players would struggle to make a lot of turnovers on the corners, but would give the team a pair of productive cover guys that if the team going to a more aggressive, blitzing, press scheme would benefit both. His physicality in run support also could make him an upgrade over Grimes on the left side. He would be a very good Falcon and have a chance to develop into an elite corner for the Falcons. He'd at least be a very good corner and I have little doubt that within two or three seasons would be by far the best on the roster and a Pro Bowl-caliber defender.
He has elite potential so he could go in the Top 10, but I think he's a bit closer to middle first round talent because he needs to show a bit more consistency.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
Man Coverage: 4.0
Zone Coverage: 3.5
Ball Skills: 4.0
Scouting reports of the cornerbacks in the 2011 Draft.
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