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2024 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Andru Phillips, DB, Kentucky

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The 2024 NFL Draft class features a very talented group of cornerbacks, especially at the top of the draft. There are quality players with the traits that fit into any defense at the NFL level.

Things get more interesting — or at least more complicated — on the depth chart.

Kentucky's Andru Phillips, for example, has only modest attributes and lacks many of the qualities the NFL looks for in starting cornerbacks. However, he is a good player on the field and has the versatility to play multiple roles on defense.

The New York Giants could look to add another player to their defensive secondary. Could Phillips' versatility make him a valuable pick for the Giants?

Outlook: Andru Phillips (23)
Games seen: vs. Florida (2023), vs. Georgia (2023), vs. Missouri (2023)

Measurable values

Kent Lee Plate (@mathbomb) | RAS.Football

Strengthen

  • consciousness
  • Instincts
  • Tackle
  • physicality
  • Zone coverage
  • Final kick

Phillips is a smart, physical and instinctive defender.

He played both outside and in the slot in Kentucky's secondary, appearing primarily as an off or zone defender in both lineups. Phillips has very good instincts and discipline in off-coverage, and while he generally shouldn't be asked to play man converge, he has enough athleticism to implement pattern-matching rules.

Phillips is an active communicator pre-snap and does a good job of engaging and redirecting receivers who cross his area of ​​responsibility without freelancing. He also has an explosive lower body, as evidenced by his 42-inch vertical jump and 11-foot-3 broad jump. This gives him an excellent finishing touch and the ability to be very physical at the catch point. This allows him to be disruptive at the catch point by pushing the ball away or releasing it with hard hits.

Phillips has a great downhill trigger and is a reliable tackler. He does a good job of wrapping up ball carriers and getting them to the ground after contact with minimal yards. Likewise, he is not afraid of hard hits and flies downhill to the ball.

weaknesses

  • Long speed
  • length
  • Man marking

Compared to the NFL cornerback archetype, Phillips is undersized and lacks long-range speed.

He is small and has short arms for an outside corner, is 1.75 meters tall and has arms of 80 centimeters. He has a stocky, powerful frame but struggles to keep up with taller, longer receivers in coverage. While he has plenty of physicality, his size limits his ability to hinder receivers at the line of scrimmage. He can also have a hard time passing the ball up against taller receivers or getting around them when they get to him.

Phillips also has just enough speed for a cornerback at 4.48 40.

Also worth noting is that Phillips hasn't generated any interceptions despite the amount of off coverage he plays.

game tape

projection

Phillips is considered a versatile nickel defensive back at the NFL level. He may not be able to stick as a fullback at the next level, but his skill set suggests he has plenty of versatility to play the slot, provide safety, or act as a “DB” that's between Switches positions and responsibilities to conceal cover. Teams that have high man coverage rates will almost certainly look elsewhere.

Does he fit with the Giants?
Possibly, although they could prioritize an outside cornerback

Last word: A late day 2 or early day 3 value