Draft Profile: BioVerone McKinley III was a highly regarded prospect out of high school. He was a four-star prospect and the No. 32 cornerback in the class by Rivals and a top-six corner in Texas by Rivals and 247Sports. McKinley chose Oregon over an array of offers from major schools.
After playing little as a freshman McKinley saw action in 14 games and made 11 starts at safety. He ended the 2019 season second among FBS freshmen with 501 snaps played in pass coverage, made 46 tackles, including 29 solo and one for a loss, and had a 73.1 QB rating when targetted. He made the FWAA Freshman All-America team at season's send.
He made six starts while playing in all seven games for Oregon during the COVID-shortened 2020 season and finished third on the team with 41 total tackles, including 21 solo stops. McKinley added an interception, a fumble recovery, a forced fumble, and two pass breakups as a sophomore. In 2021 he played on a huge 939 snaps and logged 57 tackles, 14 stops, made 6 interceptions and surrendered an impressive 64.4 QB rating when targetted. He finished the season as a consensus all-American and earned five first-team All-America honors together with a pair of second-team recognitions. He was also one of three finalists for the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, given to the nation's best defensive back.
Scouting Report: Strengths
- Reads the QB eyes and has a good instinct for coverage
- High football IQ and a natural leader of the defense
- Fluid and smooth in his movements - able to sink his hips - transitions well from back pedal
- Flashes some physicality as a hitter.
- Tough and scrappy with forceful nature to be physical at all levels of the field. Has good bulk on his frame to be aggressive in run support.
- Gives up his body in run support with a very good closing burst.
- Good instincts and anticipation reads and reacts with discipline. Dangerous with the ball in his hands.
- Strong hands to make plays on the ball, effective blitzer who shows well-coached technique and awareness.
- Has good football awareness to read and react quickly and stay balanced and patient in space.
- Closes to the ball quite well and possesses the hands to snatch throws away from his frame.
Scouting Report: Weaknesses
- Didn't run at the combine and posted an unimpressive 4.65 at his pro-day. Raising questions over his long speed and his lack of quick-twitch skills
- Short arms who will be dominated by bigger receivers
- Will bite on fakes leading to him being out of position
- Has only average size, height, speed combination limiting his athletic upside
- Needs to tighten his angles in pursuit. Needs to show better tackling technique to consistently finish.
- Will slip off tackles and needs to finish more consistently.
- Inconsistent getting off of blocks. Can be a step slow to react when a quarterback comes back to his side of the field late in progression.
Scouting Report: SummaryVerone McKinley III was an elite high school player, a good college player but may only ever be an average pro. He has good skills in coverage, is a solid tackler, and has a nice instinct for the game - he however probably lacks the athletic skills to be an impact player at the next level. He is a little undersized for the position and has only average strength combined with average speed and explosiveness which likely puts the ceiling of his NFL career as a reserve player or nickel back.
Expect McKinley to be picked after the fifth round of the 2022 NFL Draft.
Verone McKinley III percentiles vs other Safety's (NFL Combine historically - higher value represents better perfomance)
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