As the NFL season winds down, FantasyPros will be taking a look at early NFL draft scouting reports before the combine in March. Here’s a look at Mekhi Garner.
Check out all of our 2023 NFL Draft Scouting Reports & Prospect Profiles
2023 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Mekhi Garner (CB – LSU)
Mekhi Garner (CB – LSU)
6’2″ – 217 lbs.
Originally attended Louisiana-Lafayette, where he played sparingly in 2019 before stepping into a starting role the following season (nine of eleven appearances) and making 27 tackles while intercepting three passes and breaking up another seven. Reprised that role the following year and finished with 31 tackles and eight breakups, then transferred to Louisiana St. this past year, finishing with 43 tackles and eight breakups, with quarterbacks going just 14/36 with one touchdown in 2020, 16/34 with two touchdowns in 2021, and 24/54 with two touchdowns in 2022.
Three-year starter who allowed just 42.5% of his career targets to be completed. Has a massive frame with ideal size, bulk, and length. Overall technique and feel of the game are in line with expectations. Often lined up in press-man looks, showing the ability to use his length and physicality to disrupt opponents at the line; typically played on the short side of the field. Leverages his length to pin defenders to the boundary when working on the short side of the field. Gets good depth and stays over the top when shuffling or playing zone. Experienced player who has the route recognition/anticipation skills you’d expect. Uses his hands to feel routes developing and stay connected through the stem. Reaction times are solid and doesn’t have that much wasted motion to his transitions. Not the biggest ball-hawk, but was able to break up quite a few throws over the past three seasons. Willing in run support, with the strength and radius teams look for making him a pretty reliable tackler.
Not the fastest, quickest, or most flexible corner in the class; somewhat susceptible to short slants and other quick in-breaking routes and will probably have more trouble against smaller, quicker types than possession receivers. Backpedal looks slightly hunched. Has solid reaction times but isn’t the most explosive when planting and driving on a spot. Can get grabby at the route stem, although he wasn’t penalty-prone in school. Balance, technique, and discipline when taking on blocks aren’t quite where you’d like them to be given his size. Doesn’t always put himself in the best position to make a tackle.
A big, long, and smart cornerback who showed that he could play press-man, shuffle, or zone techniques at the highest level of college football this past season, combining good route recognition skills with knowledge of how to use his length, traits which made him difficult to target successfully in school. Has a projectable game, and it doesn’t require much imagination to project him to the next level, so represents a relatively high-floor pick who may appeal to teams like the Seahawks that traditionally favor bigger corners.
Projection: Round 3
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