Coverage Spacing - Anticipation definitely helps to mask physical deficiencies but if you flood his coverage, he's going to get caught between a rock and a hard place. Does well to patiently wait out breaks and trusts his eyes when opposing quarterbacks cock the arm to throw. Lack of length and short area twitch cut down on effectiveness.
Acceleration - Does not possess the high enough burst to play deep middle. Even in click and close and in shallow spaces, his wins come because of feel, not because he's able to jump into the catch with burst. Savvy receivers and QBs will keep him on his heels and neutralize his impact.
Tackling - He's a really physical finisher and like his variance between wrap up and cut tackles depending on the angle he's closing from. That said, lack of length is problematic and if he's late at all to gear down and come to balance, ball carriers will cut and break his closing angle. Needs more consistency to gear down.
Zone Coverage Skills - Smart. Sinks under layered throws and will do his best to squeeze and diminish throwing angles, just lacks the wingspan and mobility to do so at a consistent and high level. His game preparations have kept him engaged in right place, right time situations to this point.
Ball Skills - His reactive quickness on poorly thrown balls or tipped passes is effective and he shows good nose for the ball when playing through the hands of receivers/ball carriers both as a tackler and in coverage. Does not have the high point skills to win consistently at the catch point with finesse and will need to play through the body.
Competitive Toughness - Blue collar — about as tough as they come. His functional play strength is strong but stacking blocks can be problematic due to his lack of length. His effort should never be questioned however and you can routinely watch him working off the back side of plays to try to corral and rally into a contain position.
Flexibility - Very linear player. His zone drops in shallow spaces struggle to reach appropriate depth when sinking because how hard he struggles to flip himself open. His ability to gear down and redirect as a tackler is limited as well — too many reps where he has to flash width late and can't.
Feet/COD - He's controlled but that comes at a cost thanks to his limited quickness and dynamic base. He'll struggle to trigger when having to open on any kind of angle. His redirection skills are not going to cut it if he's isolated in man coverage and has minimal margin for error in zone as a result.
Man Cover Skills - Should not be considered a viable option here. Lacks the mobility for transitions and playing in phase and he also lacks the length to disrupt from the trail position when targeted down the field. Lack of long speed further complicates his ability to execute man coverage assignments with consistency.
Versatility - Has enough carry to work effectively as a coverage defender on special teams and that should be considered his core role at the pro level. Smart enough to work pro defense with a lot of layers but you'll need to protect him and likely keep him in shallow zones in sub-packages for best results.
Best Trait - Toughness
Worst Trait - Length
Best Film - Michigan (2019)
Worst Film - USC (2019)
Red Flags - None
Player Summary - Geno Stone projects as a ST contributor at the pro level with only modest upside utilized into a regular defensive backfield rotation. Stone's lack of burst, length and dynamic range of motion in space project a unique set of barriers that will be difficult to overcome — despite his competitive toughness, dense frame and football intelligence. He'll need a very specific set of circumstances to lock himself into a long-term role. That said, his toughness and tackling can help on kick coverages.