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Does Tarvarus McFadden Lack The Speed To Remain At Corner? A Position Switch Could Help Him

Hogs Haven takes a look at 2018 NFL Draft prospects that could contribute to the Redskins

NCAA Football: Florida State at Miami Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Tarvarus McFadden, CB
School: Florida State | Conference: ACC
College Experience: Junior | Age: 21
Height / Weight: 6-2 / 204 lbs
Projected Draft Status: 3rd Round
NFL Comparison: Jimmy Smith

College Statistics

Player Overview

Tarvares McFadden was one of the best cornerbacks in college football last year. The former 5-star recruit from Plantation, Florida chose Florida State over many other suitors after a heavy recruiting campaign to get him to Tallahassee. He didn't contribute much to the stat sheet his freshman year in 2015 as he was playing behind Jalen Ramsay and others but when he got his shot his sophomore year he took advantage of it. McFadden was poised to be the next big thing to come out of Florida State as he was sticky in coverage and most impressively showed next level and prolific ball skills. This past season was McFadden’s junior season and to call it disappointing would be an understatement. A majority of prospects have issues with consistency - its part of learning and developing as a player - but McFadden's drop off in interception production and his exposure to faster and quicker receivers has exposed him. Despite his lack of explosive burst or speed McFadden still has talent and can be effective in coverage with his length and instincts. I would not rule out a move to safety for him where his lack of top end speed will be mitigated some.


  • Excellent size and length for the position (even better as a safety).
  • Physical style of play and skill set is suited for a press corner. Annoying in coverage through the route.
  • Good mirror ability and fluidity out of his backpedal. He anticipates routes well and generally is in position to make a play on the ball when it comes his way.
  • Technically proficient in most areas. Bails with the receiver and turns his head to find the ball.


  • Lacks long speed and quickness to stay with the majority of NFL receivers on the outside. This is most obvious on vertical routes but he can also struggle when changing direction as well. If he remains at corner he will have to win with his physicality and technique.
  • While his passes defended numbers rose his interception production fell dramatically. How reliable are his hands really?
  • Inconsistent as a tackler. Sometimes he gets in the mix and other times he's a bystander.
  • Can panic when he’s beat with speed.

Let’s see his work:

More Tarvarus McFadden videos

How He Would Fit On The Redskins

A team may try McFadden at corner but I think he will move to safety sooner rather than later. It has to be a downer for him because if he was a tenth of a second faster his draft stock would have likely improved and I wouldn't have my theory about a position switch. McFadden's athletic profile puts him in league with other safeties in the class such as Quin Blanding, Sean Chandler, and Damon Webb. All of them have played both safety positions and could line up at either spot in the NFL. As far as the Redskins go I think McFadden would have to make this position switch. I wouldn't peg McFadden as a box safety due to his tackling inconsistency but would try him out at FS first where he could have more of a chance to use his anticipatory coverage skills. He’s a long and lanky player that despite his lack of long speed is rangy and can cover a lot of ground and does have good coverage skills. With a position switch, he could be the one providing help over the top instead of requiring it. The change in position might also give him another opportunity to rekindle the ball skills he put on display the season before last. McFadden is a talented prospect with a big disadvantage at a position that requires speed. His success whether he changes positions or not is likely going to be determined by the scheme he plays in and the opportunity he‘s provided at the next level.