Chris Simms’ top 5 cornerbacks in 2023 NFL draft

“With the 16th selection in the 2023 NFL draft, the Washington Commanders select cornerback…..”

If the Commanders were indeed to select a cornerback, as several analysts have suggested, which cornerback(s) might still be available at 16 for the Commanders to select?

Pro Football Talk’s Chris Simms has done his film study, and Wednesday presented what he believes to be the top five cornerbacks in this 2023 Rookie class.

Scroll to continue with content

5- Kelee Ringo, Georgia

Jan 10, 2022; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide running back Brian Robinson Jr. (4) runs the ball against Georgia Bulldogs defensive back Kelee Ringo (5). Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

His size is the first thing that you just go, ‘What?’ Because he has a prototype safety body.

“How can this guy be this thick and move like this? How can he do this?”

“Nobody is gonna push this big (guy) around, nobody. That certainly is not going to be an issue.

His change of direction stuff is not beautiful. He’s a little heavy-footed because he’s a bigger guy. It’s a little clunkier than the other guys (in the top five), but it’s not bad.”


“When this guy opens up, he can really go. Obviously, with a 4.36 40 time.


4- Deonte Banks, Maryland

Nov 19, 2022; College Park, Maryland, USA; Maryland Terrapins defensive back Deonte Banks (3) breaks up a pass for Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. (18). Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

“There’s a thickness to him and a power and strength element that certainly jumps out.”

“He had one bad game. I watched three games of the guy.”

“He’s sticky as Hell; he’s got very good feet.”

“He doesn’t know how to use his hands at all yet. So he’s not really great at jamming people at the line of scrimmage.”


“I thought his ability to play the ball and create PBU(s) … I was very impressed there.”

3- Christian Gonzalez, Oregon

Oregon’s Christian Gonzalez hauls in an interception

“Unlike the first two, Gonzalez, he’s got a little more size and meat on his bones.”

“He’s got incredible ball skills. His technique is off-the-charts good. He looks proto-type. He looks like Darrelle Revis. It looks awesome, and the film is awesome too.

“His ability to plant his foot in the ground, break on the ball out of transition, and his size and strength in coverage he might be better than the top two. But not in like the tackling, physicality, taking on blocks.”


2- D.J. Turner, Michigan

Michigan Wolverines defensive back DJ Turner (5) Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

“He’s the most technically sound corner in the draft. There’s nobody better at technique.

“His hips are better than Witherspoon. Witherspoon might be a hair better with acceleration.”

“His start-stop ability is amazing. Other than Witherspoon he has been put in the most tough spots out of anybody.”

“In pure man-to-man I think he is closer to Witherspoon than people give him credit for.”


1- Devon Witherspoon, Illinois

Illinois Fighting Illini defensive back Devon Witherspoon (31). Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports


“He’s up there with one of the most twitchy, sudden people I  have ever seen in my life.

“He’s got very good play strength for a guy that is 5-foot-11, 181 pounds. He doesn’t know that. He thinks he is 220. Nobody’s told him.”

“You can really see his ability to accelerate, whether it’s downhill or stick your foot in the ground and change directions.”

“As for a negative, It’s maybe that he is a hair over-aggressive…He sees a slant route. He’s like, I’m taking it away…But his makeup speed is phenomenal.”


Story originally appeared on Commanders Wire