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Top 10 Cornerbacks in NFL 2021 Rankings

Jalen Ramsey Is the Top Corner in the NFL for 2021, with Jaire Alexander rising up going into the 2021-2022 NFL Season.

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By Brandon Walker | September 19, 2021 - 06:11 PM

In today's NFL, having a lockdown cornerback in coverage is paramount. With offensive coordinators having more sophisticated passing attacks and the rules that allow for wide receivers opportunities to put up insane numbers. I know that it is early in the season but here are two people that are going to be far above their peers at the cornerback position and that is Jalen Ramsey and Jaire Alexander. These two are young corners that are physical with press coverage, in run support, and can take away the best player on the opposing offense. With that being said, here is my list of the cornerbacks that I see having a big impact in 2021.

 

Honorable Mention

Byron Jones

Team: Miami Dolphins

2020 Stats: 2 INT, 15 YDS, 1 FF, 28 SOLO, 1 TD

Jones came over from Dallas was a nice complement to Xavien Howard and became of the best cornerback tandem in the league. His interception numbers are not high but he has solid coverage skills.

 

L'Jarius Sneed

Team: Kansas City Chiefs

2020 Stats: 3 INT, 42 YDS, 31 SOLO

Sneed finished with the best opponent passer rating among rookies with a 66.6. His is a big corner that is playing safety when needed.

 

Carlton Davis

Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

2020 Stats: 4 INT, 42 YDS, 52 SOLO

Davis held his own while covering Terry McLaurin, Michael Thomas, Davante Adams, and Tyreek Hill in last year's postseason. Davis is in line for a big contract if he takes a step up in 2021.

 

Kenny Moore

Team: Indianapolis Colts

2020 Stats: 4 INT, 45 YDS, 1 FF, 68 SOLO, 1 TD

Moore broke out in 2020 with four interceptions and earned him a new contract in the offseason. Moore is one of the best slot corners and run defenders in all of football at his position.

 

Joe Haden

Team: Pittsburgh Steelers

2020 Stats: 2 INT, 38 YDS, 44 SOLO, 1 TD

At 32, Haden has proved that he can still make an impact in Pittsburgh's secondary as he recorded nine interceptions over the last three seasons. Quarterbacks only record a 77.5 passer rating when targeting Haden.

 

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Top 10 Cornerbacks

  1.  J.C. Jackson

Team: New England Patriots

2020 Stats: 9 INT, 80 YDS, 34 SOLO

Jackson recorded nine interceptions last year in Foxboro. Jackson is great with covering the deep ball as he only has allowed five passes of over 20 yards in his three-year career.

 

  1. William Jackson

Team: Washington Football Team

2020 Stats: 1 INT, 30 YDS, 38 SOLO

Jackson, a free-agent addition from the Cincinnati Bengals, is great in man coverage. When he is in coverage, quarterbacks have completed just 52% of their passes throwing to Jackson.

 

  1. Denzel Ward

Team: Cleveland Browns

2020 Stats: 2 INT, 1 FF, 38 SOLO

According to Pro Football Focus, Ward has recorded a coverage grade of 72.0 in his first three seasons in the league. He is a perfect match for those smaller, speedier receivers that are en vogue in 2021.

 

  1. James Bradberry

Team: New York Giants

2020 Stats: 3 INT, 19 YDS, 2 FF, 44 SOLO

Bradberry is a ball hawk, even though he had just three interceptions in 2020. Bradberry recorded 18 pass breakups and recovered two forced fumbles last season in his first season in New York coming over from the Carolina Panthers.

 

  1. TreDavious White

Team: Buffalo Bills

2020 Stats: 3 INT, 28 YDS, 1 FF, 44 SOLO

In his first four seasons, White has had either a pass breakup or an interception on 17.1% of passes thrown in his direction according to PFF. White is one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL playing in zone coverage because he is technically sound and rarely out of position.

 

  1. Stephon Gilmore

Team: New England Patriots

2020 Stats: 1 INT, 15 YDS, 1 FF, 30 SOLO

Gilmore had a down season in 2020, but he should have help from returning defensive starters returning to the lineup after opting out of the season. From 2017-2019 Gilmore had graded out at an 85 according to PFF.

 

  1. Marlon Humphrey

Team: Baltimore Ravens

2020 Stats: 1 INT, 15 YDS, 8 FF, 70 SOLO

Humphrey is a versatile playmaker that is elite playing outside and playing in the slot. Humphrey as a corner forced a league-high eight fumbles last season. His versatility and his nose for the ball are elite.

 

  1. Xavien Howard

Team: Miami Dolphins

2020 Stats: 10 INT, 77 YDS, 1 FF, 40 SOLO

Howard had 10 interceptions, 20 pass breakups, and a grade of 89.6 according to PFF. He will give up a big play here or there due to his aggressive ball-hawking style of play but he cracks the top three on my list.

 

  1. Jaire Alexander

Team: Green Bay Packers

2020 Stats: 1 INT, 1 FF, 40 SOLO

Alexander's interception numbers are not there but he is this high on this list because he only gave up 353 yards in coverage in all of 2020. Alexander had 17 pass breakups and 1.4 wins above replacement which is the highest among all cornerbacks in 2020.

 

  1. Jalen Ramsey

Team: Los Angeles Rams

2020 Stats: 1 INT, 2 YDS, 36 SOLO

Ramsey has never had a PFF coverage grade of lower than 70 in his first five seasons in the league. He talks a lot of trash, but boy can he back it up by using his size and technique to cover almost any receiver in football. Ramsey is probably the best run defender at the position and that makes him the total package.

 

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