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2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Mike Sainristil (CB – Michigan)

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Mike Sainristil (CB – Michigan)

FantasyPros will be taking a look at early NFL Draft scouting reports before the Combine in March. Here’s a look at Michigan cornerback Mike Sainristil.

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Mike Sainristil

Mike Sainristil (CB – Michigan)

5’10” – 182 lbs.

Background:

Originally from Haiti, but moved to America when he was less than a year old. Originally played wide receiver at Michigan, catching 37-539-5 (14.6) over the first three years of his collegiate career before being converted to corner in 2022. Has been the team’s nickel corner for the past two seasons, allowing 43/66 passing (65.2%) for 446 yards, one touchdown, one interception, and six breakups last year. This season, allowed 29/50 (58%) for 412 yards, four touchdowns, six interceptions, and six breakups.

Positives:

Stepped right into a major role in his first season at corner and looked comfortable. Typically lines up in the slot but also played on the boundary more this past season. Does play some man coverage, but Michigan calls a relatively high amount of zone on defense as well. Energetic player whose explosive movement skills stand out right away. Gets physical with opposing receivers to disrupt their timing from off coverage, and does a good job of using his hands to feel routes and stay connected. Positioning balances risk and reward relatively well in zone coverage. Sniffs out screens pretty quickly. Established himself as a real ball-hawk this past season with six interceptions, including one in the national title game. Aggressively undercuts routes and shows the ability to read the quarterback’s eyes and break off of his original man. Attacks blocks with aggression, and shows more power than anticipated given his frame. Very willing in run support. Gives great effort in pursuit and is actually a pretty effective tackler given his frame.

Negatives:

On the small side for a pro cornerback, which will probably keep him in the slot at the next level. Can open his hips a little bit early and give up opportunities to complete shorter in-breaking routes. Tends to set up a bit too far outside when defending seam routes. Turns all the way around rather than into receivers, creating easier throwing lanes on seam routes. Aggressiveness can be used against him, and sometimes seems too eager to break off of his man.

Summary:

A highly aggressive slot defender with explosive athleticism, very good ball skills, and a physical style of play, he was able to make quite a few splash plays for the Wolverines this season. I don’t know whether I love the way he defends seams, slants, and other routes breaking over the middle of the field, as he often sets up outside in case there’s an opportunity to come off of his man and undercut routes near the boundary. Risk-tolerant teams willing to let him gamble could end up with a playmaking nickel defender on their hands, but there’s a chance his style of play could be exploited at the next level without more discipline.

Projection: Round 4-5

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