Should the Raiders pick up Bryce Thompson in the first round?
Thompson is one of the most touted cornerback prospects heading into 2021, and he’s expected to be one of three Volunteers to go in the first round. His collegiate career was solid at Tennesse, as he accumulated eight interceptions, eight tackles for loss, two forced fumbles, and eight passes defended.
Playing in the SEC no doubt prepared Thompson to go into the NFL as he faced future NFL wide receivers in his three years there.
Pro Football Focus grades Thompson as one of the top cornerbacks in rushing the passer, as well as in coverage. His pass-rush grade for 2020 sits at 92.8, and 76.3 for his coverage skills. Some will point to Thompson’s measurables and say he’s undersized, as he sits at 5’11” and weighs 190 pounds.
He could always put on muscle if need be, but a prospect that can play all over the backfield and still strike at quarterbacks should merit a look. He played 52 snaps in the slot in 2020, along with 47 at free safety, with 321 snaps wide on the outside.
If Thompson in the first round doesn’t sound appealing, there’s one more prospect that could be picked up later in the draft.