With the 109th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the Seattle Seahawks selected cornerback Coby Bryant out of Cincinnati. Cornerback was a major need for the Seahawks after the departure of top corner D.J. Reed. Sidney Jones allowed a completion% of 61% and slot corner Justin Coleman allowed a completion% of 63.2% when he was with the Miami Dolphins. Rookie Tre Brown showed promise but is relatively inexperienced as he appeared in only 5 games last season before suffering a season-ending injury. Additionally, Jones, Coleman, and new signing Artie Burns are all on one-year deals.
Prospect: Coby Bryant
Games watched: 2021 Indiana, Notre Dame, Temple, Tulane
Measurables: 6 foot 1 – 193 pounds
- Bryant’s best attribute is his fluid athleticism. He has good game speed which he pairs with great make up speed when the ball is in the air. He has very fluid hips that allow him to quickly transition from going up the field to coming back to the ball.
- Bryant does a great job of using his hands during the route mainly at the stem to stay in phase with the receiver and prevent them from getting too much separation. He does a great job of mirroring comeback and curl routes thanks to his hands and athletic fluidity.
- Bryant has fantastic ball skills as he is able to track the ball in the air like a receiver without losing a step. When defending routes within fifteen yards he does a great job of coming in and back towards the quarterback allowing him to make a play on the ball around the receiver without hooking or interfering with them. He has great hands and concentration as well displaying an ability to make over the shoulder catches.
- A great tackler in both the running and passing game. He is able to bring down bigger backs and receivers with relative ease by wrapping them up and dragging them to the ground. He is able to stack and shed blockers in the running game or on screen plays as if he was a linebacker allowing him to make an impact on the play whether that be through a tackle or forcing the ball carrier to change directions.
- Great presence in the locker room as he was a captain at Cincinnati in the 2020 and 2021 seasons.
- Offers some versatility as he mainly played corner on the field side with Sauce Gardner playing the boundary side although he also took multiple snaps in the slot and the tight slot where he looked very comfortable.
- Bryant has very inconsistent footwork. There are times where he is able to stay light on his feet, although there are far too many plays where he gets on his heels or gets flatfooted. His feet also cross consistently in zone which hurts his ability to quickly change direction.
- Coby avoided pressing receivers at the line of scrimmage as he would immediately go into a bail technique when playing on the line. When playing tight to the line of scrimmage he starts with a narrow base too often and he gets on his heels too quickly.
- Bryant gets too upright in zone coverage rather than showing a bit of bend in his hips and knees. He needs to work on getting better depth in zone, specifically in Cover 3. There are too many plays where he gets caught in between the short and deep route when placed into conflict. He needs to get into his pedal quicker as well as there are plays where he is slow to react to his surroundings in zone coverage.
- Takes questionable angles when coming up to make tackles, committing too much to where the player is rather than staying patient and forcing them to show where they are going.
Bryant’s ability to quickly change directions as well as being able to stay in phase with receivers thanks to his hand usage during the route makes him a good scheme fit in Clint Hurtt’s defense. Hurtt has said that Seattle’s defense will have fewer zone defense plays, specifically Cover 3 and will instead look to incorporate more man coverage which plays to Bryant’s strengths.
Bryant is a good pick for this spot in the draft. He does not have a particularly high ceiling because of his lack of length along with some other weaknesses in his game. However he will likely be a rotational piece in his rookie year who can play the slot and outside and has the potential to be a starter within the next couple seasons.