2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: CB Nate Hobbs

Photo: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports


Illinois cornerback Nate Hobbs will enter the NFL after an accomplished career with the Illini that featured 35 starts. Hobbs has adequate athletic ability to play cornerback at the pro level and his coverage ability has afforded some significant opportunities in the Big Ten; going back to early career matchups with the likes of Terry McLaurin (Washington Football Team). Hobbs has plus size and suitable length to play on the boundary and his primary coverage in games studied saw him in deep third zones and playing in a half turn to get suitable depth out of the snap to drive and stay leveraged overtop of vertical route stems. Hobbs had a productive career but there was a large point of emphasis on big plays—something Hobbs didn’t make a ton of via turnovers; he logged just three career interceptions and a fumble recovery (returned for a touchdown). That, plus just 11 career passes defensed, leaves you wanting a little bit more from Hobbs given some of the bright flashes you see on tape. This is a scheme-specific developmental prospect. 

Ideal Role: Developmental outside cornerback.

Scheme Fit: C-3/bail-tech-heavy defensive system.

Written by Kyle Crabbs

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Written By:

Kyle Crabbs

Director of Scouting

Kyle Crabbs is the Director of Scouting for The Draft Network. Prior to his time with TDN, Kyle worked for seven years as the founder of his own third-party scouting service, NDT Scouting. Providing media coverage and also consultation services for agencies, Crabbs penned an annual NFL Draft Prospectus featuring 300+ player profiles on an annual basis from 2014-2020. Crabbs is currently the co-host of the Draft Dudes podcast with fellow TDN scout Joe Marino and helps coordinate TDN's national scouting effort.

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