Scouting the Senior Bowl: Devin McCourty

What a difference a year of college can make. Devin and Jason McCourty came to Rutgers at the same time, Jason – younger by 27 minutes – the more highly touted recruit, Devin the one with only one Division I-A offer. Devin redshirted that first year, Jason played and last year, as a fourth-year senior, he was drafted in the sixth round by the Titans.

This year, as a fifth-year senior, Devin had one of the most decorated years of any Rutgers athlete. He was a captain (like his brother before him), he was an all-league corner (like his brother before him), he was a frighteningly fast receiver (again, like his brother) and now there’s chatter he could work his way into the first round.

Rutgers CB Devin McCourty (5-11, 186)

Teams threw away from McCourty and he still had 10 pass break-ups and 80 tackles. Oh, and he notched his sixth blocked kick this year. His sixth.

McCourty learned in watching his twin Jason go through the process a year ago that special teams versatility could be as much a ticket to the NFL as corner play. And so, he rarely took a play off (he notched 111 at UConn, a game where he returned a kickoff for a score), he was Rutgers’ gunner on punts too and NFL Network draft expert Mike Mayock said he’s “been a very pleasant surprise.”

He mixed it up with some of the country’s best receivers down in Mobile this week, the experts at Draftinsiders.net wrote that he “physically beat down Mardy Gilyard on a number of instances,” and CBSSports.com’s Rob Rang said he “has the agility and straight-line speed for man coverage. He breaks on the ball quickly and has the active hands to rip away passes at the last moment.”

Mayock called him “a very quick, tough kid” and said as of now, he seems McCourty as a solid second round pick. And perhaps rising.

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