Pros: Has good speed and quickness. Has good hips and shows nice burst to the ball. Confident player with a nose for the ball. Does a good job when keeping things in front of him, that works well in zone coverage. Willing to contribute in run support. Also shows ability in the return game, primarily on kickoffs.
Cons: Can get turned around in man coverage. At times gives up too much cushion, because he overly relies on athleticism. Lacks size, and struggles in press coverage. Not great in run support, and will miss a lot of tackles. His contributions there are spotty.
Overview: Allen is a confident guy with potential to be an effective man and zone corner. But as of now, he's much better in zone coverage. Also worked as a kickoff returner at Georgia, so has ability to contribute on special teams, although he wasn't great there. He's got a lot of upside that if you can coach him up some, he could be one of the better corners in the league. He's 5'9.5"
NFL Forecast: I think if Allen goes to a zone-heavy scheme, he can have immediate success in the NFL. If he goes to a scheme where he's asked to play mostly man coverage, and they throw him to the wolves, he could potentially struggle. But if a team is committed to coaching him, and he takes to that hands on approach, I think down the road in a man scheme he could be a capable starter. Right now, I'd project him to be a solid No. 2 corner. Let him come in and compete for a nickel spot, and then after a year or two if he shows the necessary improvement, he can start. If not, then well you should have at least a decent nickel corner. He's one of those guys that I don't ever think will break into the upper echelon of NFL corners, because I don't think he'll be consistent enough and will struggle against the bigger receivers.
ATL Forecast: Allen could be a good fit in Atlanta because he can come in and immediately compete for a depth role, but all the while be groomed to eventually take over as a starter down the road. If he was drafted by the Falcons, my expectation would be that he could serve as a backup for a year or two, and by the time Chris Houston's contract expires after the 2010 season, could potentially slide in and take his spot if Houston doesn't return.
Value: His value is a third round pick. For a zone-heavy team that could use the immediate boost to their nickel, he might be worth a late second, but that's pushing it. Take him in the third round, and groom him to be a starter down the road.
Scouting Reports of cornerbacks in the 2009 NFL draft.
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