Damon Arnette

Cornerback

Ohio State

6'0"

195 lbs

SCOUTING GRADE

7.13

Injury History: Chipped Bone in Leg (2016), Wrist Injury (2018)

Games Evaluated: 2019 Vs: Clemson, Michigan State, Indiana 2018 Vs: Michigan

Report By: Pat Pryor

Scouting Report

ATHLETICISM: 7.22

Q.A.B./C.O.D.: 7.40
Flexibility: 7.40
Deep Speed: 7.50
Explosion: 7.30
Coordination: 6.50

Arnette can go from jamming receivers at the line to running with them very well. Does a great job of getting around receivers to disrupt the catch. He can stick with receivers down the field and on turns. He isn't huge but has a nice frame and is powerful enough to jam receivers well. His closing ability is good when he has an open lane and can explode to the ball carrier with good physicality. However, when there is a lot of players in between him and the ball he can fail to get around them to make a play.

COVERAGE ABILITY: 7.86

Man Press: 8.50
Man Off: 7.90
Zone: 6.80
Hand Fighting: 8.60
Hips/Turn Ability: 7.50

Arnette's man press is by far his top coverage ability, as he is at his best when he can be physical through coverage. His arm strength He doesn't struggle to stay with his receiver, and he makes excellent plays on the ball. He can always get in between the receiver and the ball to stop the catch. His off man does take away his ability to get physical at the line, but he still has a great ability to disrupt the pass. He didn't play a lot of zone, but when he did he proved to be reliable and hustle to the ball well. If he can get in front of the receiver he will prevent the catch. He does a very good job of turning into coverage and back around to make a ball on the ball. He can jam receivers at the line and still stay with them. He isn't huge but has a good frame for his size and has no lack of physicality.

PLAYMAKING: 7.30

Closing Quickness: 7.30
Ball Skills: 8.20
Route/Play Diagnosis: 6.40

When the ball is in the air, Arnette has no struggle getting to it. He didn't play a lot of zone, but when he did his bright spots were in his ability to get to the ball. In the NFL he'll have to be ready to play more zone and work on his ability to recognize plays consistently. He disrupts the catch very well and doesn't allow a lot past him.

RUN SUPPORT: 6.53

Quickness Upfield: 7.10
Fight Through Blocks: 5.70
Tackling: 6.80

He possesses good quickness upfield but often fails to utilize it as he struggles to fight through blocks. Can get lost and off-target if he doesn't have a clear path. He's very physical and if he can get down the technique of getting around blockers, he'll be a weapon in run support. As of now, he has the physical tools in this area but not the fundamentals.

COMPETITIVENESS: 7.20

Toughness: 7.70
Production: 7.20
Consistency/Motor: 6.70

He doesn't get a lot of interceptions but is still a lockdown corner. He tries his best to make a difference on run plays but isn't consistent enough to be considered reliable in the run game. However, he is consistent in man coverage and is a very reliable cornerback.

INTELLIGENCE: 7.40

Instincts: 7.50
Learn/Retain: 7.30
Teamwork: 7.40

He's very quick on his feet and knows how to make a play on the ball whenever it is coming. He showed a lot of improvement from 2018 in staying focused, as he had moments where he got lost if the quarterback held onto it too long. In 2019, that issue was rarely seen and he very reliable locking down. With Jeff Okudah at the number 1 spot, Arnette did very well at the number 2 spot.

STRENGTHS

Arnette's press man coverage is excellent, absolutely locks down, especially on press. Does great going after the ball, always knowing where it is and how to get in front of it. His ability to get in front of the ball is his best, and it results in breakups and interceptions. He's at his best in press-man, and rarely allows gains when he's playing it. With good strength, he's physical as a cornerback and in tackling. While he hasn't played a lot of zone, he has shown promise but will need to be consistent if asked to play it more at the next level. He has a good enough frame jam receivers at the line and is quick enough on his feet to turn around and keep up in coverage.
WEAKNESSES

His speed going upfield is great but he often fails to make a difference on run plays. He needs to improve on his ability to go through blocks and support on runs. Didn't have the cleanest play in 2018, could be sloppy on the field, but did improve a lot in 2019. He played behind one of the best corner prospects in years and doesn't have much experience leading the secondary or mirroring the top receiving option. He rarely played zone and will need to be ready to be more consistent in that area.

BIG PICTURE

Arnette should transition well into the NFL as a man corner. If he goes into a system where he has to play a lot of zone there will certainly be an adjustment period, but with the right coach, he should be able to turn his bright spots into consistent reliable play. Playing against NFL quarterbacks he won't be a dominant press corner day one but he has the fundamentals to become one. He had 5 interceptions and 2 forced fumbles in his college career, so he isn't a turnover machine but has the ability to take the ball away. In the NCAA semi-final, he didn't make much of a difference with only one tackle but did have a pass breakup. Arnette definitely has the ability to be a reliable starter in the NFL but first has to become consistent in zone coverage. Almost all NFL teams play a majority of zone coverage and he can't be the number one on a team if he doesn't become more consistent. In the right system, this shouldn't be hard as he has shown that he has the fundamentals and ball skills. He'll also need to work on his run support as he'll be playing against much better blockers that know how to manipulate space compared to those he already struggled with. After considering to declare in 2019, he came back to OSU and polished his play, becoming a lockdown man corner that will be considered anywhere from the second to the mid-third round. Overall he won't be a day 1 starter and he will take work to be a starter in the NFL. Until he is reliable playing zone coverage the right system is important for him, he will need to go somewhere that will support his development playing zone while also allowing him to show his skills in press-man. Consistency is his biggest area of need and is a work in progress but has a high floor thanks to his athleticism and excellent man coverage and very good athleticism.

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