Post Draft Scouting Report: Cyrus Jones, CB

The Patriots took a player at arguably their biggest need with their first pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.

The Patriots took a player at arguably their biggest need with their first pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.

NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken

The wounds have been licked, the pride is beginning to heal, and the shock has worn off from the picks the Patriots made over the weekend. Now that we know who the players are, it is time to see what they bring to the table and how they can help the team this year and beyond. I will start with the Patriots first pick of the draft, Cyrus Jones.

Name: Cyrus Jones (#5)

School: Alabama (Sr.)


Jones was a player that I had done a write up on pre draft ( but I was able to talk with a friend who is a die hard Alabama fan who knows his stuff and here is what he had to say. “Jones was a coach favorite and a fan favorite. He was outgoing and confident in a good way and was considered a team leader and a player the coaches relied on to do the right things. He is fundamentally sound in both man and off coverage. He played bigger than his size and used it as motivation to prove to everyone he could cover the best despite his size. Jones is an electric special teams player and will contribute immediately there. He also said that he does not necessarily agree that Jones is a slot corner. He rarely played there in college and thinks he has the physicality and the awareness to hold up outside in the NFL. He did concede that despite good coverage, bigger targets were able to have success against Jones. Jones showed consistent improvement and confidence in his corner abilities and his best football is in front of him. ”

Jones ultimately ended with a 3rd/4th round grade for me and the 106 overall player on my board, so when the pick was announced I was a little disappointed. He had gotten a lot of buzz late in the process and a lot of Patriots fans really liked him. For me, his size is the biggest concern. The Patriots have had smaller corners in here before that have had great athleticism, but with the way the NFL is now, those type of guys are limited. His intangibles and his ability to be an instant contributor and potentially an impact player on special teams probably put him higher on the Patriots board than it did mine. I also am excited about the possibility of him continuing to get better in coverage. I like Cyrus Jones and I think he is a great fit for the Patriots and from everything I read, it seems most people really like this pick, so I am the outlier here, not the norm, and that is okay.

I don’t expect Jones to have a huge impact on defense in year one. It will be interesting to see where the Patriots have him line up in training camp and in preseason games. I like the pick better if he can compete for that #2 job, but size may force him inside. If that is the case, he could be in a rotation at the slot corner position and would see the field a decent amount of time. Where I see Jones making the biggest impact is on special teams, specifically as a punt returner.



34 Responses to “Post Draft Scouting Report: Cyrus Jones, CB”

  1. J H TARBORO says:

    What’s not being said is, with the addition of Cyrus Jones, who’s very like Malcolm Butler in terms of his “dawg” mentality, must also look at the UDFA CBs Cre von Leblanc, Jonathan Jones,and V’Angelo Bentley, all have that “dawg” mentality and some of these guys will make the team and displace a veteran.

  2. Gerry says:

    >> For me, his size is the biggest concern.

    No kidding. I was looking for a #2 CB that moved Ryan into the slot. Jones is not that player. As a pr/kr he may be an issue for Amendola. his cap says waiver then resign.

    What you read about Jones, Thuney, Brissett is how intelligent and coach-able they are. Scar and JMcD liked them as position their coaches. Let’s hope that JG lights it up in those first 4 games.

    • Todti says:

      If nothing unforeseen happens, Kamu is going to make the roster. He can be an instant ST contributor and his upside is immense. I guess he will take the 5th LB spot, so replace Bostic compared to last season, and I’m looking for contributions on defense at the end of next season, similar to Collins.

      • Gerry says:

        His with his height and SS/LB tweener status also makes him an option to cover TEs. I would expect his to see his snaps increase over the first half of the season. Of all the draft picks I am most excited by his upside.

  3. Stephen J says:

    James Bradberry news. I know some of you followed him leading up to the draft and when I saw this I’d thought of sharing it. Big shoes to fill.

  4. Todti says:

    With Thuney projected to play inside, his fast feet and quality pass protection, and the addition of receivers in the short-to-intermediate range I’m coming back to something I wrote about earlier during the offseason. The Patriots go all-in on the quick passing game. The focus in pass protection will be not to get beat inside with the OTs being required to be just good enough to give Brady those low 2.xx seconds (on average, of course). They only failed on a large scale against the Broncos, an other-wordly pass rush, when they were plagued by injuries. The expansion of the receiving corps is probably envisaged to make sure that Brady has enough options to get rid of the football that quickly.
    If that’s the way it unfolds that would be typically Patriots-esque. They know where to adjust in the offseason and it’s mostly counterintuitive to the noise during the off-season.

  5. Kevan says:

    How’s a Amendola+Cannon to the Jags for Luke Jockel trade sound?

    • steve earle says:

      Hi Kevan, well I’ve cooled off a bit from the weekend. About that trade scenario I’d buy into it if BB and the Jags would. Have to consider Joekel’s salery is 11.9 mil or so I read so I don’t know if Cannon’s and Amendola’s would offset that kind of money? One other thing is the Jags may not want to let him go until mid season or until they are sure his replacement proves himself. Other then those things it sounds good.

      • Kevan says:

        Always takes a couple days with BB. I didn’t know he was that expensive because jags declined the 5th year option. Too much money for sure

        • steve earle says:

          Looking a little closer I think that 11.9 is the 5th year money for 2017. So for 2016 it would be 6.7++ mil (if I’m right). So it might squeeze the cap some but might just fit with a little working or extending. Anyway it’s an intresting idea.

      • Gerry says:

        Luke Joeckel’s cap in 2015 is about 6.75M. Of that 3.5M is signing bonus, and Jax has to pay that if he is traded.

        • Gerry says:

          Edit: that is 2016 cap numbers

        • steve earle says:

          Thanks Gerry, I thought it was something like that after I rechecked the numbers. Going a little further it appears Cannons cap this year is 4.75 mil and Amendola’s is 6.8 which is 11.55 which isn’t out of the ball park for Kevan’s original trade scenario. Think is, as always, the devil is in any details. If it was a simple no frills trade it could give us a pretty good OT for two years. Anyway it’s something to think about.

        • Kevan says:

          That trade scenario I think was brought up before I can’t lay claim to it. Interesting idea, i think i make that move.

        • steve earle says:

          @Kevan I agree it’s something BB should think about at least.As I mentioned before the thinking down in Jkvill is they keep him around until his replacement proves himself then tries to trade him. In that case BB might have some leverage if our line is doing a good job. If they are not then Jkvill gets the leverage. Be interesting to see.

  6. Kevan says:

    I wonder if malcom Mitchell will play any corner for the pats at some point. Seahawks and Jaguars viewed him as a corner. Probably for 17′ at the earliest but a Cooper Thuney Mason interior would be about as athletic as it gets. After learning about Brissett and that he’s been with Parcells since high school, recruited by Charlie Weis, I feel a little better about the pick. Best case scenario pats can trade jimmy G next offseason and the patriots can get back the draft capital that was stolen from them. It’s been brought up before but there’s no way Amendola stays a patriot on that contract. I’m hoping he restructures because it would be 2.7 in dead money next year, I don’t know if that changes if he is traded. Surprised no RB, I have to wonder if BB liked Prosise or Drake. Pats need to be scouring the RB and Tackle positions all off season to find a diamond in the rough. They need to gain more picks in next years draft too, so I expect to see some of that, with some mid to low end players being traded.

    • Dan says:

      There is a GREAT article in the “Pats Pulpit” explaining why Brissett’s numbers were down last year. Basically there were a bunch of injuries to his skill players around him, and his offensive line. Just like Brady when you take the essential pieces away from him and plug in JAGs due to injury the numbers fall off. The more I hear about this guy the more I like him

      • Jim R says:

        Bad O-Line and we took one of them SMH

      • Kevan says:

        He’s an interesting player. Obvious comparisons are Big Ben/McNair, I can even see glimpses of a more unathletic Cunningham. But i see someone else and i can’t put my finger on it. It’s when he’s just purely dropping back setting and throwing. He has like an old school classical style drop back, I don’t know testerverde? Kosar? Jeff George? It’s very similar to someone if you wanna know what I’m talking about a great example is 2:02 mark of his highlight video on youtube- qb that saved NC state.
        After a few days I feel a little better about the draft in general too. Cyrus Jones is solid. It was disappointing that the pats did not get a tackle, I’m not gonna judge Thuney differently because of it. His athleticism/intelligence combo is impressive. Even the head scratcher Valentine doesn’t look terrible. He looked strong on film but only put up 17 reps on the bench. These bigger guys get there strength from their lower body, evidenced by his 745 pound squat. Pats got some big dogs at DT that is for sure. Mitchell is a solid pick, Lucien was great in the 7th. Grugier hill and Roberts are athletic prove it on special teams types.
        I was surprised to see Joe Haeg on the board so late. With the pats taking Karras it seems Tre Jackson might be a gonner. Have to monitor Storks concussion issues but at the moment I’d put him Mason,Cooper,Thuney as the top interior guys.

    • Gerry says:

      I liked his tape and thought he was a 5th rounder. I was very surprised he was not drafted and very glad NE signed him. I hope he is either on the 53-man or makes it to the PS.

  7. Ryan says:

    I’m fairly certain Belicheck was set to take to Sean Davis until the Steelers grabbed him. Cyrus Jones makes sense in that way as a Plan B for when Belicheck decided that they were taking a corner, no ifs, ands, or buts.

    I’d still have preferred Kendall Fuller, but I can understand Belicheck’s hesitation to take Fuller given his injury and Ras-I Dowling’s outright failure in the past from a similar scenario.

  8. John G says:

    That loss of a first rounder really screwed them. Almost every year, I feel like bill goes out and drafts “his guy”. Jaimie Collins, Devin McCourty, etc.. I get a feeling that this year Bill didn’t have the opportunity or want to take the risk of trading up and getting someone he truly believes in.

    Bill is the best in the business. No question. However this year, it seems like a lot of other teams have really stepped up his game. If there is one thing I think bill may deserve some criticism for is trading both 2nd rounders to move up and get someone he really wanted in the beginning of the second. Way too much talent was passed on.

  9. nomar says:

    His value on ST is great if he can relieve Edelman and Amendola of KR and PR duties, leaving them fresher for their WR tasks.

    I don’t think BB likes tall corners, I think it was Reiss who said he feels taller CB’s have more trouble turning than shorter ones, hence the reason why he continually picks these little guys.

    Jones was a guy I consistently mock drafted for the Pats and usually in the 2nd round so the pick and spot really wasn’t a surprise to me. Corners are highly sought after so if you want to pick up a good one you need to do it early.

    Considering safeties went in the 1st and I didn’t think there was any safeties worth a 1st rounder I was fine with the Pats taking him here. Even if he only plays nickel it was a major need to get some young blood there.

    • Bmp1113 says:

      I don’t think bill doesn’t like tall corners. He liked talib. He just always tries to shift away from the trend to get better value. When everyone went smaller in the front 7 bb didn’t. When everyone over values receivers because they are tall, he waits and grabs other guys like edelman and gets amendola who do better vs the tall cbs. He does like players with a high 3 cone time. Before sherman and peterson someone like jones might have been taken higher. He is just slightly shorter than butler so he can definitely play on the outside. He likely moves in at least as the pats starting nickle which is a starter in todays nfl as Bill has stated before. Devaluing an inside cb is no longer relevant. He also plays great against the run and has wr hands. He could also be the punt returner. I think its a great value pick and nickle cb is one of the few positions that they could have even drafted a starter.

      • GM-in-Training says:


        I think you get the gist of why BB goes against the grain. Some years it works better than others. He’s going for short CB and LB/SS hybrids that are really fast. The byproduct is an abundance of ideal special teams players.

        What kind of defense does he build with that?

        Remember the Superbowl vs Seattle when slot CB Kyle Arrington got shredded by a 6’5″ rookie WR? Maybe it was mental mistakes, but there are trade offs.

    • Todti says:

      I wrote it when I discussed the Valentine pick but I think it also applies for Jones. When the Patriots were on the clock there just weren’t any better players at his position/role available, maybe except Fuller but they didn’t consider him for understandable reasons. Because they (apparently) definitely wanted to draft this position they probbly decided they couldn’t wait and live with a worse alternative. Add Jones’ whole package and I think the pick is pretty reasonable.

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