The 2024 NFL Draft will be here in a little more than a week. As of now, the Green Bay Packers have the 25th overall pick in the first round and five picks in the top 100 including two second round picks and two more in the third round. This is the next in a series of articles looking at players the Packers may be interested in selecting in the early rounds of this year’s draft. The only players listed here are realistic possibilities for the Packers GM Brian Gutekunst to pick in the first or second round of the draft or who fill specific needs for the team right now. Today we will examine cornerbacks. Here are five cornerbacks the Packers could select in the early rounds of the 2024 NFL Draft. Please note I am including Cooper DeJean with the safeties.

You can find offensive tackles here.

The State of the Packers Cornerbacks Entering the 2024 NFL Draft

The Packers suffered a lot of injuries at cornerback last season. Jaire Alexander managed to play only seven games. He still fared better than Eric Stokes who was only in three. Stokes’ career is at a crossroads after suffering through two inconsistent seasons cut short by injury. Rookie Carrington Valentine got plenty of playing time with Alexander and Stokes sidelined. He played better than expected. The Packers re-signed Keisean Nixon to be the slot corner although he was inconsistent at that position in 2023.

Depth is provided by Corey Ballentine and Robert Rochell. Other candidates on the roster include recently signed free agent Gemon Green, Anthony Johnson, and Zyon Gilbert.

Cornerback is a premium position and it’s a spot Gutekunst is always looking to upgrade. The Packers have selected corners in the first round often in recent years.

So here is a list of possible cornerbacks the Packers may take early in the 2024 draft. They are not listed in any particular order. These are not the best available players but are players the Packers could take if they use the 25th pick or trade up grab them a bit sooner.

Cornerbacks the Packers Could Select in the Early Rounds of the 2024 NFL Draft, Number One: Terrion Arnold, Alabama

Terrion Arnold possesses the versatility the Packers like in their defensive backs. He played both boundary corner and in the slot at Alabama. He’s only 21 and already has demonstrated a high football IQ and sound fundamentals. His ability to read offenses and anticipate plays allows him to play faster than his raw 40-time.

In addition to his strong grades in pass coverage, Arnold isn’t afraid to make tackles in the run game. He is also athletic and graded out with a 9.22 relative athletic score.

The Packers will have to trade up if they hope to land Arnold. He is already good but has the potential upside to become great.

Number Two: Nate Wiggins, Clemson

If you’re looking for pure speed at corner, you can’t do too much better than Nate Wiggins. He ran a 4.28 40-yard dash and has an impressive RAS of 9.43. Wiggins’ speed allows him to catch up when he’s beaten initially.  Wiggins thrives in coverage and is smart enough to versatile enough to play well in both man and zone.

His lack of strength and bulk are an issue. He doesn’t always tackle well against the run and at just 173 pounds which is not big by NFL standards on a 6’1” frame.

He’s competitive and confident and should excel in coverage in the NFL. He would make a fine addition to the Packers defense if Gutekunst selects him late in the first round.

Cornerbacks the Packers Could Select in the Early Rounds of the 2024 NFL Draft, Number Three: Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

While Kool-Aid McKinstry would give Packers fans lots of fun things to post on social media because of his name, his play would also likely provide Packers Nation with lots of joy.

McKinstry is smart and rarely wastes any movement. He uses his long arms to his advantage in coverage and uses good technique. In fact, he did not commit a penalty in 2023. McKinstry plays with a lot of confidence and having him team with Alexander would give the Packers two similarly brash perimeter corners.

McKinstry’s RAS is lower than the Packers prefer with a score of just over 7.5. Still, he’s smart and capable of contributing significantly as a rookie according to many scouts.

Number Four: T.J. Tampa, Iowa State

The Packers have enjoyed success with several Iowa State alums and T.J. Tampa could add to that list.

Tampa has great size for a corner at 6’1” and 190. He has long arms and can be a physical tackler although he does miss tackles at times. He likes to play bump and run, which is a good fit for Jeff Hafley’s defense.

He lacks elite speed and ran a 4.58 40-yard dash. Still, his football smarts more than made up for it in college.

The Packers would be very happy if Tampa is still on the board for them when they are ready to use either of their two second-round picks.

Cornerbacks the Packers Could Select in the Early Rounds of the 2024 NFL Draft, Number Five: Quinyon Mitchell, Toledo

Quinyon Mitchell may be the best fit for the new defense the Packers intend to run this season, but they will almost certainly need to trade up if they hope to select him.

He has ideal size at 6’0” and 195 pounds and he ran a 4.33 40-yard dash and scored an RAS of 9.79. Mitchell has played well in off man coverage. He’s confident and is able to catch up after being beaten initially because of his elite speed.

Mitchell will be making a big jump from the MAC Conference to the NFL, but he has all the tools to succeed.



Follow Gil Martin on Twitter @GilPackers

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