Byron Maxwell, CB/S, Clemson

Scouting reports of the cornerbacks in the 2011 Draft.
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Byron Maxwell, CB/S, Clemson

Postby Pudge » Tue Apr 12, 2011 2:33 pm

Clemson Senior
40: 4.46


Has good, thick build and looks more like a safety on the edge. Has the size and speed you want to match up with bigger wideouts on the outside. Comfortable working in press where he can use that size to his advantage. Shows ability to play the deep throw and defend the jump ball. Has the speed to run with guys on the outside. Contributes in run support, able to get upfield and make stop at the point of attack. Can sniff out screens and deliver hit to receiver/ballcarrier.


Doesn't have great hips and struggles to turn and run at times on the deeper patterns. Will bite on the double move. Doesn't do a good job consistently turning and locating the ball on the deep route. Doesn't always take great angles in space after the catch and will whiff on some stops after the catch. Not a great wrap tackler and will tackle too high, leading to other misses stops.


Maxwell has a good size/speed combination, but is a bit of a tweener as far as playing corner vs. safety. Was only a starter during his senior season, but lost reps in the second half of the year to Xavier Brewer and basically became nickel corner. Finished year with 46 tackles, 2.5 for loss, 1 pick, 7 PBUs, and 3 forced fumbles. Two previous years as a reserve player and nickel corner, he combined for 90 tackles, 4 for loss, 2 picks, 9 PBUs, 3 forced fumbles. A regular contributor on special teams. He tore his ACL during his senior season.


Maxwell if he was bigger would make a nice safety prospect. But he can play corner at the next level, I just don't think he's disciplined or technical enough to be a starter. He can definitely add depth and contribute on special teams. He can match up with guys on the outside, but I don't think he's a guy that can consistently cover and make plays. You put him on a tall, fast receiver in press on the outside and he can hold his own. But I'm not sure he has the ability to do much besides defend the deep routes. He just doesn't have the hips to really like him playing inside or working against the underneath stuff. As a safety, he can compete there, but probably isn't good enough in run support to really like his chances there. He could get by as a reserve and stopgap starter for a couple of games, but I think would be exposed over the long haul because I don't think he has the ball skills, awareness, and range to make plays there. His primary value will be on special teams and if developed could work in dime packages in a hybrid safety/corner role.


Maxwell gives the Falcons a big corner that can compete on special teams. But he's not a great fit going forward, not unless the Falcons fully commit to an aggressive press scheme. And even then he'd be a mediocre nickel corner that would require the team to have a good slot corner (likely a starter that moves inside in nickel packages) because he's not good enough to do that. He's really more of a No. 4 guy that competes on special teams for the Falcons, and may occasionally get reps on defense, but you probably won't like the results.


Maxwell's ability to provide depth and his potential means he is worth a sixth or seventh round choice.

1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite

Speed: 3.5
Man Coverage: 2.5
Zone Coverage: 2.5
Tackling: 3.0
Ball Skills: 2.5
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